ASHTON — Family and friends gathered in Hannan High School’s gymnasium to watch the members of class of 2014 celebrate a milestone in their lives
“Be successful in everything you do,” Daniel Parsons, one of Hannan’s top graduating students, said to conclude his Commencement address.
Along with giving his fellow students words of wisdom to help them begin their futures, Parsons also spoke of how close the 45-member class became throughout their time in the halls of Hannan High School.
“I can say that I can name all of my classmates,” Parsons said.
One student speaker, Darian “Ty” Page, who was also picked as one of Hannan’s top graduating students, decided not to give a speech, but instead write a song about the class and the school, and perform it for his classmates, teachers, friends and family.
“He said, ‘I can’t give a speech, but I can sing anything you ask me to,’” Principal Dr. Karen Oldham said of Page. “So I said to go for it.”
Heather Ellis, another top graduating student at Hannan, also reminisced with her classmates and gave them advice for the years ahead.
“Now is our future,” Ellis said. “This is the day we’ve been waiting for — the day we thought would never come. High school is just another memory where we’ve climbed huge mountains, but today we all face the same challenge: What mountains will we climb next? We can make sure the Class of 2014 leaves a positive influence. Our past has made us who we are today.”
The Class of 2014 left its mark on the school, and graduate Leandra Harper said she has made so many memories.
“I’m very excited to graduate. All these years have led up to this one big moment of letting go and going off into the world,” Harper said. “I’ll miss how close we are to the staff. We’re all very close since it’s such a small school, and I know I’ll have to come back and visit.”
Graduate Jasmine Casto said the class has had some times she will never forget.
“We’ve done a lot of fun things as a class,” Casto said. “Last week, we had a water balloon fight. We’ve had senior skip days together. We went bowling and all kinds of other things as a class. It’s been really fun.”
The graduates agreed that although they have made some unforgettable memories in high school, some graduates such as Ellis say they are eager to see what the future has in store.
“I’m very excited and ready to graduate. I’ve waited a long time for this and we’ve all worked hard. It’s finally here,” Ellis said. “I’m nervous and excited, and all my emotions are just mixed together. I’m ready to move on and do what interests me.”
Oldham announced this year’s top students as Daniel R. Parsons, son of Paul and Diane Parsons of Milton; Heather B. Ellis, daughter of Darren and Stephanie Ellis of Ashton; and Darian “Ty” Page, son of James and Jamie Darst of Apple Grove.
Members of the Hannan High School graduating Class of 2014: Hallie M. Anderson, Joshua T. Barker, Tyler W. Bowcott, Franklin T. Brickhouse, Barbara A. Call, Jasmine P. Casto, Aaron L. Chapman, Cheyenne S. Chapman, Hannah N. Chapman, Hope R. Chapman, Kristina G. Chapman, Rebecca J. Chapman, Kara M. Combs, Ashleigh Devries, Heather B. Ellis, Dakota D. Fannin, Ashley M. Flora, William C. Gibson, Corey E. Graley, Leandra L. Harper, Steven K. Hodge, Brandon A. Holley, Tristan T. Johnson, Jessie L. Jump, Courtney M. Kauffer, Zachary D. Killingsworth, Wynston T. Lloyd, Tiffany N. Lovejoy, Kade A. McCoy, Chelsea N. Meadows, Tyzic K. Meadows, Coltin S. Midkiff, Darian J. Page, Daniel R. Parsons, Kandis D. Ronk, Autumn N. Ross, Marissa R. Russell, Joshua R. Sadler, Jamie M. Schofield, Latosha D. Stover, Laykin B. Stover, Michael T. Sword, Mallory G. Templeton, Matthew J. Wallace, Kelsey N. Williams.