VAN BUREN, Maine — The 13 members of Van Buren District Secondary School’s senior class celebrated their graduation on Friday evening.
Valedictorian Elyssa Violette spoke about the pride she felt for each of her classmates, adding the moment is bittersweet because it will be difficult not to share each day with the close-knit class.
“Despite our many disagreements I wouldn’t have wanted to spend these last 14 years with anyone else. I’m so proud of each and every one of you and how far we’ve come as individuals and as a class,” she said.
Van Buren District Secondary School seniors, from left, Mikail Deschaine, Avery Ouellette and Aidan Soucy look over the yearbook before graduation ceremonies on June 2, 2023. (Courtesy of Van Buren District Secondary School)
Violette thanked the teachers, advisers, school nurse and staff for their unceasing support and for shaping her into who she is today.
“Finally, I’d like to say thank you to my family for being my biggest supporters and pushing me to be the best version of myself,” she said.
Salutatorian Aidan Christopher Stanco urged his classmates not to rush through life without enjoying it, adding that no one completed this journey alone.
“There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes for us to graduate. It takes support and guidance from our family, time spent encouraging us to be the best versions of ourselves, numerous hours spent watching practices and games,” he said.
Van Buren District Secondary School senior Saige Michaud prepares to march in to graduation ceremonies on June 2, 2023. (Courtesy of Van Buren District Secondary School)
That support also included bottle drives and selling merchandise to relatives, convincing them that they really need more frozen pizza, chocolate and candles, he said.
“We are going from a group of 13 to individuals striking out on our own,” he said. “Decisions are being made consciously and subconsciously. These decisions will shape
our goals and future, ultimately deciding our paths. I wish the very best for each of you.”