RUMFORD — Sunshine peeked in the back door of Puiia Gymnasium early Thursday evening just as 78 seniors of Mountain Valley High School completed their graduation ceremony.

Spirits were high as each descended the bleacher steps to receive their diploma from Principal Matt Gilbert.

Before the ceremony, Gilbert was presented with tiny umbrellas and ponchos as a reminder of the seemingly nonstop leaks into the gym and other parts of the school this year.

Class President Mariah Witas said each student may have had some troubles during their four years at the school, but the whole time was wonderful.

“I can’t wait to see what’s ahead,” she said.

Valedictorian Nathan Fitzpatrick said he had done a lot of thinking about what topic to speak about, and finally decided he’d tell the hundreds of parents, siblings, grandparents, other relatives and friends that the class was thankful to have grown up at Mountain Valley.

“Four years ago, we walked into MVHS feeling small, scared and very young, and now that we’re graduating, we’re feeling small, scared and very young as we strike out into the world,” he said.

But having grown up in the area towns was very special.

“We’ll never have another hometown,” he said.

He also said that many people say the high school years are the best in a person’s life. Although he said his experience was one of the best, high school is a launching pad.

“There are so many more events (to come). Why don’t we try to make every moment the best?” he asked.

For Byron school board member Judy Boucher, Thursday night may have been one of her best moments. She presented her twin sons, Andrew and Anthony, and her grandson, Nathan Boucher, their diplomas, then gave and received big hugs.

Each graduate received a round of applause when presented by Assistant Principal Al Cayer.

When Witas instructed the Class of 2014 to turn their tassels, most of the caps went flying into the air.

Gilbert said the class is the smallest the school has graduated in the past few years, but the next several classes will be larger.

Superintendent Craig King said the graduates received a total of $120,000 in scholarships at Wednesday night’s banquet.

Following Thursday’s graduation, most of the class was headed to the Boothbay YMCA for a night of food, games, music and other activities in the Project Graduation program.


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