The sun was shining and a light breeze was flowing over the football field outside the Tucker County Board of Education on June 6, the evening of the 2014 graduation for Tucker County High School seniors. A cheerful, chattering crowd filled the bleachers but a hush fell over the crowd when Jay Hamric, principal of TCHS, came to the microphone. Hamric introduced Savannah Ambrose to sing the National Anthem and she left her seat among the other students and came on stage.
Ambrose, among other things, is the 2014 class president and weeks earlier, during a meeting of the class officers, everyone was discussing who was to do what at graduation. Erin Marks, English teacher at TCHS and one of the senior class advisors, asked Savanna if she would like to sing the national anthem. Ambrose knew that Ben Flanagan, the class secretary, had sung the anthem at basketball games several times so they originally planned on doing the anthem together. However, when time grew short and they hadn’t been able to practice, Flanagan asked Ambrose to sing solo.
Ambrose took the microphone, looked up at the sky and sang a very beautiful rendition of our National Anthem. This was the beginning of a very well conducted, meaningful graduation ceremony. Ambrose, as class president, then welcomed everyone attending and thanked them for coming.
Next to take the stage was Melissa Dyer, the other senior advisor and history teacher at the high school, who gave a heartfelt address to all the graduating seniors. She was followed by Bethany Friend, the TCHS Student Body President, who spoke briefly but eloquently. Next, a poem was read by Payden Michael. Speeches were also given by Emily White, the class valedictorian, and Caroline Adams, the class salutatorian.
Shane Eakle then motioned to the first row of seniors, who stood, walked forward, and lined up at the stairs to the stage. For the first time in over 30 years Coach Gutshall did not read the names of the TCHS graduating seniors and the last five years Coach Gutshall and Coach Eakle shared that honor. This year Coach Eakle and Erin Marks shared the reading of the names of each senior when it was time for each one to come up onto the stage. After receiving their diplomas from the Board of Education members, the students shook hands and hugged their way across the stage and then went back to their row.
After every senior received their diploma Dr. Eddie Campbell, Superintendent of Tucker County Schools, conducted the Turning of the Tassel and Pronouncement of Graduation.
As soon as the seniors were officially graduated, happy pandemonium broke out with silly string spewing in all directions and graduation caps flying into the air. Our county and our country have now received a very wonderful group of young men and women to help carry us into what we pray will be a bright and promising future.
The top ten graduates were: Valedictorian Emily Jean White, Salutatorian Caroline Helene Adams, Benjamin Connor Flanagan, Miranda Brooke Siler, Logan G. Brusak, Rebekah Danielle Simmons, Ian O’Day Nichols, Bethany Kaylynn Friend, Courtney Michele Poling and Mitchell Joseph Mason.
The 2014 Tucker County High School graduates are as follows: Savannah Marie Ambrose, Melanie Lynn Amos, Zachary Armstrong, Cara Ann Baker, Stephanie Lynn Betler, Chelsea Dawn Bonner, Mariah Lindsey Bowley, Brandon Ray Carr, Lenae Kathryn Cole, Dustin Allen Conrad, Halie Marie Cooper, Keisha Brooke Davis, Sarah Elizabeth Davis, Emily Lou Dent, Maya Pei Dunn, Joannah Stephanie Dyer, Zachary James Everly, Tyler Keith Fike, Ashley Rochelle Floyd, Christopher Michael Freeman, Victoria Jean Friend, Brandi Nichole Hackney, Cory Scott Hanlin, Andrew Hebb, Joshua David Hebb, Tyler Landon Hebb, Tenya Tyler Goosby Hiser, Shawn Hunt, Jeremy Paul Jones, Katherine E. Keener, Corey Lee Kelley, Jessica Ellen Kincaid, Lindsay Brooke Kines, Andrew Tyler Kisamore, Skyler Maraea Lamb, Madison Lambert, Hannah Marie McDermott, James Payden Michael, Seth Kayne Millican, Allen Molone, Danielle Elizabeth-Paige Moore, Kylie Christine Moore, Ryan Allen Myers, Abby Lane Nestor, Zachary Parsons, Harry pennington, J. Spencer Pennington, Amanda Rose Phillips, Jakob Michael Pifer, William Plum, Jeb Alan Primavero, Wiley Tyler Raines, Maria Beth Ricottilli, Dalton James Roy, Lexie Nicole Simons, Zachary Logan Southern, Terreaza Rae Stull, Cheyenne Autumn Surguy, Joshua Thompson, Austin Waugaman, Alayna Michelle Wesoloski, Shannon Marie Whitehair, Troy Daniel Young and Austin Wade Zirk.
The Parsons Advocate