RUMFORD — The 95 members of the Class of 2017 at Mountain Valley High School received their diplomas Thursday evening, along with some advice and encouragement from the valedictorian.

Speaking in a packed Puiia Gymnasium, valedictorian Abigail LaBrash told the audience she learned that each experience in life is unique, “and if you don’t treat them as such, you’ll be watching life go by.”

“Take a moment to look around you. We will never be this way, as a class, again. After tonight, we go our separate ways,” she told her classmates.

“Live in the moment, tonight and every day of your lives,” LaBrash said. “If you can do that, every experience will be much more enjoyable. This moment, right now, is for us.”

Handing out the diplomas were Principal Matthew Gilbert, Assistant Principal Alan Cayer, Regional School Unit 10 Superintendent Deborah Alden, RSU 10 board Chairman Bruce Ross and graduation coordinator Christopher Carver.

After Alden announced the Class of 2017 had officially graduated, the class sang their song, “I Lived,” by One Republic.

Following the commencement, the grads received hugs and congratulations before departing on school buses for their Project Graduation celebration at Mt. Cranmore in Conway, New Hampshire.

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Mountain Valley High School Class of 2017 valedictorian Abigail LaBrash takes the stage to give the senior address during commencement exercises in Rumford on Thursday. 

Emily Laubauskas talks with friends before the start of Mountain Valley High School graduation in Rumford on Thursday. Ninety-five seniors received their diplomas.

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