By Jenny Darby Jarem for the SNAP
Wednesday, June 12, 2013 —
“Go with faith,” Class President Chandler Keck told his classmates Saturday night. Keck was named Albemarle High School’s 2013 valedictorian. He spoke to the graduating seniors twice.
Other class officers include: Vice President Tyler Moose, Secretary Raquel Eaton and treasurer Mark Lowder.
Don’t take the path that everyone else takes, Keck said, restating Ralph Waldo Emerson. “Go instead where there is no path.”
This quote by Emerson is the class motto of 2013: “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go, instead, where there is no path and leave a trail.”
Joel Morgan was then named the salutatorian with a GPA of 4.81.
Lauren Egan sang “I Hope you Dance” following the speaker, Erin Phillips Taylor.
Taylor emphasized the beauty of living in a small town — and having the support of friends and neighbors during tough times. The cystic fibrosis survivor has had her share of struggles.
“In this town, they will always stand beside you,” she said.
“Embrace the people around you,” she told the graduates.
“These people will care about you no matter what you do.”
Superintendent Dr. Terry Griffin also reflected on the closeness of Albemarle.
“Look around at your classmates one last time,” she said.
“A true friend can never be replaced.”
Griffin used examples from Rober Fulghum’s book “All I Really Need to Know I learned in Kindergarten to give graduates advice for the future.
“Learn from your mistakes,” she said.
“Clean it up and move on.”
She challenged the senior class to live a balanced life, and, most importantly, “never, never stop learning.”
Diplomas were distributed by Griffin, Albemarle Principal Karen Nixon, Assistant Principals Michael Williams and Dr. Avarisse Peterson and Assistant Superintendent Dr. Sandra Carter.
Jenny Darby Jarem is a freelance contributor for The Stanly News & Press.