Lemon Bay seniors get a special ceremony

Reporter: Erika Jackson Writer: Drew Hill
Published: Updated:
Graduation (Photo via Shutterstock)

Most high school students await and some even dream of what their graduation will be like from the moment they set foot on campus. Seniors at Lemon Bay High School in Englewood are no different.

“You go through high school awaiting graduation day,” said Class of 2020 President Abigail Turner.

However, many of them never pictured graduation being like this and some of the students can’t shake the feeling that they’ve missed out on some high school traditions because of the pandemic.

Class of 2020 Treasurer, Riley Haynes said, “I was kind of hoping to have the full experience and have the whole year, the graduation, prom.”

As were many events, Lemon Bay High School’s graduation was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Luckily, the community was right there to rally around the students and still plan a nice ceremony for them.

“The graduation got canceled and the community and the parents really pulled this together really fast,” Haynes said.

About one-third of the graduating class came together to participate in this ceremony.

And as their guest speaker said, the class of 2020 is a class of firsts, no doubt about that.

“You’ll leave here today as the first class in the history of this high school to experience this type of graduation you’re the first class in the history of lemon Bay high school to experience a pandemic,” said Bill Truex, Chairman of the Charlotte County Commission and guest speaker at Friday’s ceremonies.

Setting up outside in the grass of the Fellowship on Englewood Church with family and seeing their friends for what could be one last time was very important for these Lemon Bay seniors. Especially since they thought spring break was the last time they’d get be together.

“What we thought was simply spring break vacation was really the last time we would be in high school,” Turner said.

But instead of being upset about it, Haynes is urging fellow students to focus on the good times, the memories they made with their friends, and all of the things they’ve learned. While this might their last time in blue and orange, their lives are just beginning.

“Don’t be mad that a part of our school got cut short. Be thankful for the memories that we got to experience,” Haynes said.

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