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By Echo Menges
Family, friends and school staff gathered at the Scotland County R-1 High School gymnasium in honor of the Class of 2022 to celebrate their high school graduation marking the closure of one chapter and the start of another one.
Hundreds of people packed the gymnasium to witness the graduation ceremony, and see 34 graduates receive their diplomas.
The traditional song, “Pomp and Circumstance” by Edward Elgar, was performed by the SCR-1 Concert Band as the graduates entered the gymnasium and walked to their seats in front of the stage.
The first speaker to address the crowd was Senior Class President Emiley Dial.
“We are off to bigger and better things. Together, we are closing the door to our childhood and opening the door for opportunities yet to come,”said Emiley Dial during her graduation speech. “This moment right here is the last moment we will be together as the Class of 2022.”
Principal Kirk Stott presented the class honors and announced the Valedictorian and Salutatorian, Emily Terrill and Jared Cerroni respectively.
Cerroni gave the senior class address.
“Growing up I realized just how competitive our class is in sports and academics,” Salutatorian Jared Cerroni told his classmates during his speech. “I believe that this competition that we’ve been through will prepare us for the future, and help us succeed (in) whatever we decide to do.”
Superintendent Dr. Ryan Bergeson paid homage to the community who helped the students through their high school journey during his remarks.
“Good afternoon to the class of 2022. Congratulations to the parents, the grandparents, the family members, the teachers and mentors they helped get these young people here today,” Superintendent Dr. Ryan Bergeson told the crowd during his remarks before asking the teachers to stand and be recognized.
Bergeson also introduced featured speaker Brock Bondurant calling him “a true son of Memphis, Missouri.”
Bondurant graduated from SCR-1 in 2012 and went on to attend the University of Missouri playing football for the Tigers and graduating with a Master’s Degree in 2017. Professionally, he is the Faith and Community Coordinator for Veterans United Home Loans.
“I’m so proud to be from this town. I hope one day you guys can realize what you’ve got here. This is not like the rest of the world. It truly is a great place to grow up. I couldn’t be more proud when people ask me where I grew up,” said Brock Bondurant during his address to the Class of 2022. “Life’s not about what you do. It’s about who you become in the process.”
The SCR-1 Concert Band performed “Where the Black Hawk Soars” by Robert W. Smith under the direction of Band Teacher Nathan Orr before Stott introduced the entire class as they crossed the stage to collect their diplomas, which were handed off by School Board President Jamie Triplett.
Graduates moved from the stage and into the crowd to hand off red roses, the class flower, to their families and mentors.
Following the presentation of the diplomas, the class celebrated with the traditional cap and confetti toss before settling down to take in the senior video featuring current and childhood photos of each graduate.
The last speaker of the day was Class Vice-president Zachary Behrens who gave the closing address.
“Since you leave these halls today, take the step from Scotland County students to Scotland County alumni. Take it all in – all the good times and bad – all the lows and the highs. Remember, everyone sitting next to you today and the impact they’ve made on your life,” Zach Behrens told his fellow graduates. “You are the maker of your own destiny. You are the writer of your life story.”
The ceremony concluded with the SCR-1 Concert Band’s performance of “Wave the Flag” by Gordon Erikson.
Congratulations to the Class of 2022 from the staff of the Memphis Democrat and the NEMOnews Media Group.