Hodgdon graduates’ close bonds will last a lifetime

2 weeks ago

HODGDON, Maine – The Hodgdon Middle High School graduation was like a family reunion at the high school auditorium on Friday night. The warmth and affection the 31 graduates had for each other, their families, teachers and school leaders was evident even to strangers.

There was laughter and shared tales. There was even a bit of teasing the way big families do. 

Superintendent Tyler Putnam said it’s like herding cats to get these guys in one place especially at the end of the senior year.

“They have personality, oh so much personality…they have so much attitude, oh so much attitude,” said Putnam. 

And the packed room clapped and laughed, with an understanding reserved for those who know each other well.

“I want to give you a glimpse into what this class is all about. They are about family, they are about one unit, they are a group that is connected with each other,” he said. “They looked out for each other, helped each other through this long journey of education.” 

Putnam relayed tales about many of the graduates from his early days at the school and detailed the strong bonds they have formed with each other. 

“If you spend any time with them, you can see long standing friendships that have been tested and continue to thrive,” he said.

HODGDON, Maine — June 7, 2024 — Hodgdon School District Superintendent Tyler Putnam confers a diploma to Hayden Ray Crowley on Friday night at the high school graduation. (Kathleen Phalen Tomaselli | Houlton Pioneer Times)

This is just the beginning, there is still so much more to learn, so much more to achieve, the world is waiting for us, said First Essayist Ella Catherine Suitter.

Their shared experience within the school walls is what has shaped them into what they are today, Suitter said, adding that they are all capable of achieving whatever they set out to do. 

“Never forget your struggles along the way, they have shaped us and made us stronger. We have learned the value of hard work, determination and perseverance,” she said. “And we will carry these lessons wherever we go. “

Senior class valedictorian Meghan Elizabeth Peters said that June 7 signified the beginning of a new chapter in their lives. One filled with incredible uncertainty and variability, but most importantly, excitement, she said. 

“How we interpret the events that transpire in the near future will be unique to each one of us,” Peters said. “But I encourage everyone to look toward your futures with an open mind, curious and ready to take on whatever may be in store.”

Putnam said the Hodgdon Middle High School class of 2024 will find their niche, their career, their passion. They are strong students, successful student athletes and more importantly wonderful people that are fun to be around, he said.

“I will miss each and every one of you,  but I know that this class will be back,” he said. “They  will visit. I will not need to invite them, they are just going to show up.o bless us with their presence a few more times.”