Sullivan addresses GHS class of 2016

Grangeville High School class of 2016 graduates (from back) Kate McDonald and Sarah Wilson walk into the gym May 27.

GRANGEVILLE — “I am honored to have been chosen as your guest speaker,” Grangeville High School teacher and coach Pat Sullivan addressed an overfilled gymnasium at graduation Friday, May 27.

“By the way, I do know I wasn’t your first choice. But Hillary Clinton deleted the e-mail and Donald Trump built a wall,” he told the laughing crowd. “So here I am.”

Sullivan used pieces from John Wooden’s Book of Quotes to give bits of wisdom to the class of 2016 such as to take what comes to them, and to “play to win, but the point isn’t winning, it’s trying.”

He also encouraged students to be loving and supportive, to volunteer in their communities, to have a positive attitude and to get back up when they fall.

“I urge you to have passion, which will determine your success,” he said. “Get a job you enjoy and you will no longer be working.”

Salutatorian Colton Cervantes advised his fellow students to “make your mark on the world but never forget where you came from.”

Co-valedictorian Darby Finnegan asked her classmates to “do what excites you – I hope we all do what sets our souls on fire and leave the world better than we found it.”

Co-valedictorian Emily Kaschmitter reminded her friends it’s OK to be scared – even necessary at times – but to “never quit living life to the fullest.”

Kaschmitter, along with GHS Principal Steve Higgins, mentioned music teacher Kathy Stefani as she is moving on from GHS.

“Thank you Mrs Stefani for changing my life,” Kaschmitter said.

Stefani directed the band and Varsity Blue Choir in numbers at the ceremony.

Co-valedictorian Lily Willig told the story of a woman paratrooper named Tiny who “let go of the rip cord” and set amazing records.

“I urge all of us to cut the static line and parachute into uncertainty,” she said. “Create a life all your own.”

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