A cause to celebrate
86 seniors bid EHS farewell in ceremony
Eudora High School teacher Dave Durkin spoke about the goals the Eudora High School class of 2002 already accomplished as well as the changes the graduates would face in a post-Sept. 11 world.
"I see that you've all made it, and I'm thankful you have," said Durkin, a 1966 Eudora High graduate. "Since 9-11, our life and our world have changed. Many of these challenges have very little impact on us directly. In the long term, it affects us greatly."
Durkin walked members of the class of 2002 through their youth in Eudora, mentioning driver's education and the challenge of having open lunch for students during their high school years. He said the graduates should be proud of their accomplishments but should continue to strive for great things.
"My challenge to you is not to be content with where you are now," Durkin said. "In our world today, there is a need for people to be leaders."
Durkin, who concluded his 30-season career as the Eudora High School track coach Saturday, ended his speech with a story about a wise man and a prince. The moral of the story was to make the best of things.
Each of the five class co-valedictorians gave a speech reflecting on the past but also pointing toward the future.
Crystal Conner, who will attend Kansas State University, urged her fellow classmates to look toward the positive things that await them in college and after.
Michael Cribbs, a student who was active in the high school drama program, began his speech with humor and ended it by quoting the Bible. Cribbs will attend Johnson County Community College to study computer science.
"As a kid, I never thought this day would come," Cribbs said. "I will miss my teachers and my fellow thespians...I said thespians, who were a great source of laughter."
Sarah Katzfey, who will go to Kansas State University to study architectural engineering, let the high school teaching staff know how much of an impact they had on her educational experience.
"Today is a symbol of change, the step from one transition to the next," Katzfey said. "Teachers you've taught us things we'll use for the rest of our life."
Amanda Stewart told her fellow graduates they all had opportunities. She hoped her classmates would continue to work hard and achieve more goals.
Emily Waln pointed out the significance of graduating high school and also added some humor to the speech.
"Today is a big day for all of us," Waln said. "We've made it through 13 years of school. I've been doing a lot of thinking about what graduation means, and it means no longer waking up at 7 a.m."
The co-valedictorian's speeches were preceded by a then-and-now video of class members. Audience members laughed as they saw graduates as young children and then their current pictures.
The Eudora High School choir gave their rendition of "River in Judea" followed by the senior choir members, Brandi Abel, Dixie Bonebrake, Juliana Casareggio, Melissa Flory, Anne Froyland, Hannah Hamlin, Jay Haupt, Laura High and Waln singing Carole King's "You've Got a Friend."
Principal Dale Sample announced the scholarships, which totalled more than $200,000. Sample, who also acknowledged the honor students, told the audience 87 percent of the class of 2002 will attend a post-secondary institution. Fifty-five percent will attend a four-year college while 23 percent will attend a two-year school. Two percent will attend another type of college, seven percent will go to a vocational-technical school, six percent will enter the workforce, five percent have other plans. One percent will join the military while another one percent are undecided.