Seaford High bids farewell to graduates in Class of 2005

See lists of award and scholarship winners on pages 47 and 53.
Photos from graduation night on page 18.

By Ronald MacArthur

Under cloudy skies but warm temperatures, 188 members of the Seaford High School Class of 2005 walked across the stage on the field at Bob Dowd Stadium during commencement on Friday night. Even a few rain drops couldn’t dampen the spirits of the members of the class. Class president, Brett Barnes, joined the honored guests on stage to help lead the ceremony. On the stage were Dr. Michael Smith, principal, Dr. William Parmelee, president of the Seaford Board of Education, Dr. Russell Knorr, superintendent of schools, Joy Oliver, keynote speaker, and Dara Laws and Melanie Wynn, class advisors. Valedictorian for the Class of 2005 is Krystal Webber and salutatorian is Beverly Pepper. Top Honor Key winners from the class are Krystal Webber and Jonathan Stephens. Since 1953, the Kiwanis Club of Seaford has presented Honor Key awards to seniors who participate in extracurricular activities. Seventeen members of the class received distinguished diplomas. They are Arthur Betts, Erika Brooke, Katherine Chapman, Ryan Gillespie, Jessica Hearn, Heather Hughes, Virginia Millman, Shanna Murphy, Beverly Pepper, Mallory Rhodes, Henry Rohlich, Victoria Sederquest, Rachel Smoot, Jonathan Stephens, Krystal Webber, Raymond Wright and Kai Yang Zhang. Members of the Seaford High JROTC presented the flags and graduate Jessica Hearn sang the National Anthem. Joy Oliver, who was the salutatorian of the Seaford High School Class of 1997, spoke to the class about four things she said they needed to keep in mind: learning, laughing, loving and lifting. Oliver, who works for the state of Delaware as a research analyst with the Delaware Economic and Development Office, graduated from the University of Delaware in 2001 with a degree in political science and economics and earned her master’s degree in urban affairs and public policy in 2004. She said that she was humbled to be asked to speak to the students. She said that she has attended three of her own graduations and understands the emotions involved. “I well know the expectations of a commencement speaker - be meaningful; be inspirational; be current; but most of all be brief,” she said. That statement got a round of applause from the graduates. And she lived up to her word. She reminded the graduates to do four everyday things.“I remind you to always learn, always love, always laugh and always lift,” she said.
Oliver told the graduates that they should never stop learning “I read three newspapers a day and still learn something everyday,” she said. “We all need to be livelong learners. And you need to love something outside of yourself. Never cease to laugh and love. “The true challenge is to lift up others and to serve others,” she added. “Success is a moving target and success is a journey, not a destination,” Oliver said. “Your destiny begins today graduates. Meet it with courage and meet it with hope.” Others making remarks included Dr. Parmelee (who has a daughter, Jessica in the class) and Dr. Knorr and Barnes, the class president. The Seaford High Band and Chorus also performed. Dr. Knorr spoke to the graduates about a poster he saw in the hallway of the Seaford Middle School. “You are the author of your own life’s story. Think of that, you and only you have the power to write your own future. That power comes from within you. What lies behind you and what lies before you are significant only in relation to what lies inside you,” he said. Other class officers are as follows: Latoya Waples, vice president; Danielle Stewart, secretary; Drew Libby, treasurer; Mallory Rhodes, historian; and Patrick Dobson, member at large. Class advisors Laws and Wynn presented the diplomas to the members of the class. Class colors are blue and white; the class flower is the white carnation; class song is “Dream On;” and the class motto is “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.” Dr. Smith introduced members of the National Honor Society, Honor Key recipients, five-year Academic Challenge members (see lists on pages 47 and 53) and Distinguished Diploma students.

The photographs and names of all of the graduates will be published in the commemorative graduation section in the June 9 edition.

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