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Sign over the windows of the WGHS athletic field press box told the story.

WGHS graduates 84 in four ceremonies

WATKINS GLEN, June 29, 2020 -- The Watkins Glen High School Class of 2020 graduated Sunday -- in four ceremonies held on the school athletic field.

The four ceremonies were necessitated by a state rule prohibiting participation at graduations of more than 150 people. By spreading out the graduation in four ceremonies, more family and friends of the 84 honorees were able to attend.

The ceremonies -- postponed from Saturday and then from Sunday morning by inclement weather -- were held at 1:00, 2:30, 4:00 and 5:30 p.m. in front of the grandstand, with spectator seating in socially distanced chairs on the adjacent football field.

Most of those in attendance -- including all of the graduates along with administrators and School Board members -- donned face masks. The graduates were permitted to lower or remove their masks when receiving their diplomas.

Each ceremony lasted 35 to 40 minutes, with remarks by High School Principal Kai D'Alleva and Superintendent Greg Kelahan. Valedictorian Collin Gaylord presented the lone speech, repeating it at each of the four events.

In his speech, he touched on the themes of Opportunity, Regret and Legacy, telling his classmates that as they enter the work-a-day world, "countless opportunities will be presented." They must choose whether to sit back or to become engaged and take "every chance you are given. Why not take it head-on? What do you have to lose?" If an effort fails, "it will be a lesson learned."

Regret, he said, is "one of the worst things you can experience" because it is something a person brings upon himself or herself through inaction. His classmates can instead choose to "push past adversity" with perseverance and grit, he said, shaping their own legacies. "It is our time to go out and make a difference," he concluded.

Photos in text:

Top: Graduate Ellie Clarkson, who received her diploma from her father, Kris, a member of the Watkins Glen School Board.

Bottom: Collin Gaylord delivers his Valedictory speech.

Left: Graduate Kelsey Kernan. Right: Haley Dean crosses the stage to receive her diploma.

Left: Olivia Stephany. Right: Scott Brubaker receives his diploma from his grandmother, School Board President Gloria Brubaker.

Left: Salutatorian Sarah Swinnerton receives her diploma from her uncle, School Board member Kris Clarkson. Right: Travis Hill.

Left: Graduate Elliott Holland receives his diploma. Right: Ali LaMoreaux.

Left: Josiah Wysocki. Right: Angelina Bravo celebrates after the ceremony.

Left: James Sager crosses the stage to receive his diploma. Right: Peighton Cervoni.

Left: Bethany Rutledge receives her diploma from School Board President Gloria Brubaker. Right: Graduate Enkang Lin.

Left: Graduate Madeline Parker. Right: Enqi Lin receives her diploma from School Board President Gloria Brubaker.

Left: Maggie Rhoads receives her diploma. Right: Adrienna Solomon.

Left: Graduate Makenzie Kellogg. Right: Isaac McIlroy receives his diploma from School Board President Gloria Brubaker.

Left: Superintendent Greg Kelahan. Right: High School Principal Kai D'Alleva, right, and Senior Class Advisor Sam Brubaker confer at the podium.

Left: Gabe Planty receives his diploma from School Board President Gloria Brubaker. Right: Graduate Miranda Rodriguez.

Peighton Cervoni, left, leads her classmates in moving their graduation cap tassels from the right side to the left, signifying graduation.

Watkins Glen 2020 graduates

David Armstrong
Dillon Bean
Brandon Beaumont
Sara Benedict-Augustine
Angelina Bravo
Scott Brubaker
Owen Buckley
Zachary Burrows
Jacey Carl
Madison Cary
Peighton Cervoni
William Chiacchiarini
Eleanor Clarkson
Dakota Clink
Haley Dean
Julia Delong
Nambdi DeSarno
Aidan DiGregorio
Hunter Doane
Austin Fedele
Garrett Gascon
Collin Gaylord
Merissa Green
Steven Gublo
Andrew Harrell
Austin Hazlitt
Andrew Herold
Andrea Heskell
Travis Hill
Elliott Holland
Dalton Ingraham
Katarena Jackson
Christopher Jacot
James Jensen
Makenzie Kellogg
Kelsey Kernan
Raiana Labonte
Alexandria LaMoreaux
Tyler LeRoux
Enkang Lin
Enqi Lin
Brittany Luke
Patrick Madaffari
Elaine Majors
Alixander Mathews
Isaac McIlroy
Pierce McKenzie
Karlee Meier
Damon Morgan
Jason Narde
Mason Neira
Madeline Parker
Jessica Peters
Gabriel Planty
Monet Price
Maggie Rhoads
Miranda Rodriguez
Kajsa Rolfes
Tristin Rose-Morley
Caleb Rozell
Bethany Rutledge
James Sager
Peter Sandritter
Zachary Schaffner
Nakendra Schwab
Dalton Shepherd
Derrian Shepherd
Bryson Simmons
Samuel Smith
Daniel Snow
Adrienna Solomon
Olivia Stephani
Eliya Stolpinski
Madelyn Suddaby
Sarah Swinnerton
Samuel Thorsland
Zackhery Torello
Cameren Underdown
Amber Updike
Hannah Warrick
Duncan Weber
Breanna Wilson
Josiah Wysocki
Sydnee Zigas

Photos at right: From top, Zachary Burrows, Amber Updike and Sam Thorsland.

© The Odessa File 2020
Charles Haeffner
P.O. Box 365
Odessa, New York 14869