Grads Bid Farewell To Forbes Road
Donning their caps and gowns Friday evening, the class led by valedictorian Colby Shaffer and salutatorian Nichole Stoey lined the auditorium stage to share some tales, strum some tunes and at long last move their tassels from right to left.
Stoey pointed out to those in attendance that everyone on stage is exiting one stage of life and entering yet another whether it be focused on furthering their education, entering the workforce or joining the military. She noted graduation will be the last memory the class would share together as a whole.
“This season of our lives is over ... ,” said Stoey, who is planning to attend Bob Jones University with a focus of social work. While at Forbes Road, Stoey, the daughter of Sam and Mary Stoey, was president of the National Honor Society and was a member of FCCLA, TATU and SADD.
Shaffer, the son of Penny and Daniel Shaffer, also spoke on new phases of life and moving on from their years at Forbes Road. Shaffer jested he could think back to kindergarten and he was to learn and then only a week prior he didn’t want to get out of bed.
Even though the class had laughed, cried and even fought together, they’ve always striven toward one common goal – to graduate, Shaffer stated. As a result, Shaffer asked his fellow classmates to say one final goodbye to one another as this could be the last time they see one another.
Shaffer has served as president of the building and trades program as well as treasurer of the National Honor Society. His plans include attending Shippensburg University to major in engineering.
American history and science teacher Scott Bollman regaled the crowd and students with tales about his coming to Forbes Road several years ago and meeting the members of the Class of 2012. Since his very first class years ago, Bollman said the students have continued to exhibit a caring and compassionate nature. Bollman cited the passing of a loved one and the class’s response as well as the tragedy that befell them earlier in the year.
That loss was depicted on stage for all to see. One chair remained conspicuously empty during the emotional ceremony except for 36 gerber daisies placed there in honor and remembrance of senior classmate Ashlyn Buterbaugh, who lost her life earlier in the year during an automobile accident. In addition to the presentation of flowers, the class also sang “So Far Away” by Avenge Sevenfold in Buterbaugh’s memory. Shaffer along with senior Jonnie Sweger accompanied the class on guitar.
Bollman told the class along the way they would lose touch with one another and inevitably have to make some decisions without the safety net of their friends. Those decisions will range from education and career to family matters. Citing “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost, Bollman said the poem is a metaphor for decisions the students will make in life.
“The road is just a road,” he said, adding that regardless of the fork taken you’ll still get to where you need to go.
“A full life is not about one choice,” Bollman concluded.
High school Principal Christina Ramsey oversaw the presentation of a bevy of awards during the May 25 graduation. The Lena B. McClain Scholarship was given to a total of 11 seniors planning on furthering their education. Recipients included Stoey, Erin McQuait, Joy Ford, Jordan Sowers, Lauryn King, Leah Summers, Ty Brantner, Sierra Kohr, Steven Varney, Cassandra Mellott and Chelsea De- Shong.
Brantner went on to receive the Valley Rural Electric Cooperative’s Brighter Future Scholarship, the newly created Leon and Lois Stevens Scholarship, the Sandy Run Landfill Award, the Helsel Creative
Arts Scholarship, a Forbes Road Lions Club Award and the Ben Knepper Scholarship.
Stoey was recognized as being awarded an FCCLA Award, the Joshua T. Wilt Jr. Memorial Scholarship, an Alumni Association Award, the American Legion Award and a Ben Knepper Scholarship.
McQuait, who served as class secretary, left graduation with a handful of awards, including a Forbes Road Lions Club Award, the Beta Sigma Phi Award, the Fulton County Medical Center Foundation Scholarship, the Harrisonville F.O.E. Award and an applicant award from the Ben Knepper Scholarship.
In addition, Lauryn King was awarded an FCCLA Award, an Alumni Association Award and the VFW Award. Classmate Ford was the lucky recipient of the McLaughlin Scholarship and the HAVFCO Memorial Scholarship.
Varney as well as Mellott were given applicant awards through the Ben Knepper Scholarship, and Mellott also received an award from Forbes Road Lions Club. Classmates Kelly Keeseman and Sierra Kohr, respectively, received awards from Allegheny College and Community State Bank of Orbisonia.
Track coach Jeremy Hollinshead rounded out the evening’s award presentation along with district athletic director Brown Cutchall presenting graduate Ryan Stoeckle with an array of medals and trophies accumulated during the 2012 track and field season. An all-star in the shot put and discus, Stoeckle placed 14th on Friday in the shot put at the PIAA Class AA state championships at Shippensburg University. The following day Stoeckle would go on to place 15th in the discus.
Stoeckle participated as a member of Mc- Connellsburg’s boys team through a cooperative program between the two districts. He is the first Forbes Road student to attend a state competition in track and field since Michael Newman recorded a similar feat on the track 23 years ago.