Forbes Road Graduates 44
One of the largest classes to come through the high school in recent years, a total of 44 seniors were awarded their diplomas last Thursday during the Forbes Road School District’s graduation services that paid homage to former classmates Joshua Wilt Jr. and Victoria Lynn.
Both Wilt and Lynn were tragically taken from their classmates and the community in recent years in separate automobile accidents that occurred not far from the small, rural school district. Even though the two students never got the opportunity to accept their diplomas and switch their tassels, the Wilt and Lynn families were on hand to see classmates place flowers on top of a gown and mortarboard in memory of Josh and Torri.
Class of 2011 salutatorian Clay Haulman led the array of graduation speakers following a brief welcome by classmate Megan Keller. Haulman, the son of Lisa and the late Edgar Haulman, stated he owed his success to the teachers at Forbes Road. Without their assistance and devotion to education, Haulman stated he may not have performed as well. His future plans including studying exercise science at Shippensburg University.
Valedictorian Kimberly Sealock also plans to attend Shippensburg University this fall in hopes of someday returning to the classroom as a math teacher. Sealock referenced her first day of school at Forbes Road and in spite of being the scared, new kid, she managed to forge many friendships over the years. Sealock thanked her parents, God as well as her family, friends and teachers.
“The impression of a good teacher can never be erased,” said Sealock, who wrapped up her speech with a poem directing her classmates to step outside the lines and create your own path in life.
Alumnae and current district librarian Amanda Brown took the podium as the evening’s keynote speaker. Touted a “great friend” to each and every one of the seniors, Brown stated her own graduation from Forbes Road 14 years ago was a happy but bittersweet occasion. Having suffered the loss of her brother prior to commencement ceremonies, Brown said his spirit lives on just as the spirit of classmates Josh and Torri and the memories they shared live on.
Brown said from surviving drama and standardized testing to finals, graduation marked both the beginning and and end of a road filled with both defeat and victories.
“Everything you’ve done this year has been a last ... a milestone,” said Brown. “ ... None of us know where you’ll be in 20 years ... but you know who you want to be.”
“Only you know what is truly in your heart,” she said.
Special music was provided throughout the ceremony by seniors Kylynne Fraker and Carson Walter as well as the high school band led by director Ryan Wade. Selections by the band included “Adrift,” “Stand By Me,” “Eye of the Tiger” and, of course, “Pomp and Circumstance,” the Forbes Road Alma Mater and “Trumpet Voluntary.”
Multiple awards and scholarships were awarded by high school Principal Christina Ramsey and special guest speakers. Class President and Secretary Kylynne Fraker and Kinsey Cutchall were given the FCCLA Award, while the annual McClain Scholarship was awarded to any senior who has been accepted into a college.
Fraker went on to be awarded the Sandy Run Landfill Award, the Helsel Fine Art Scholarship, the VFW Award of Citizenship and the Forbes Road Lions Club Award. In addition, Cutchall received the Hustontown Area Volunteer Fire Co. Scholarship, the Ben Knepper Scholarship, the Alumni Association Award and Fulton County Medical Center Foundation Scholarship.
Classmate Megan Keller took home the McLaughlin Scholarship and an Alumni Association Award, while Brianna Smith was awarded the Joshua T. Wilt Jr. Scholarship and the Beta Sigma Phi Award. The Forbes Road Lions Club Award, the American Legion Post #561 Award and the American Red Cross Award were presented to senior ShyAnn Ramsey. Donovan Bricker rounded out the night as recipient of the Ben Knepper Scholarship and the Alumni Association Award.
Kimberly Sealock, Tanner Henry and Kristen Berkstresser also received Forbes Road Lions Club awards, and Berkstresser went on to win a scholarship from Community State Bank of Orbisonia. Class Vice President Stephanie Worthing finished as the recipient of the American Legion Post #561 award.