By Deb Hurley Brobst
Resilient was the word used to describe the 2018 Platte Canyon High School graduating class.
“I can’t think of a better word to describe you,” school board president Katie Spodyak told the 60 graduates at Saturday’s outdoor commencement ceremony. “You will always be connected. … You have grown up as a family, and you will still be a family.”
The senior class navigated high school’s typical trials and tribulations but had the added burden of losing classmate Maggie Long, who was killed on Dec. 1.
To honor Maggie, her sister, Connie Long, a 2012 PCHS graduate, was the commencement speaker. Connie reminded the graduates of their special time in high school and about her special sister, whom she called fearless, leading a “big majestic life,” despite dying at such a young age.
Connie called Bailey a special place, and after she was away for a few months after high school, Bailey looked even better — more beautiful with a fiercely loyal community.
“Nothing feels better than home when you come together in Bailey,” she said. “Some of the strongest friendships you have may be people you graduated with. Soak up each experience, no matter how cliché or unique.”
Senior class president Mali DiMeo urged her classmates to make every moment matter, so they add up to something meaningful, reminding them that it was as important to be compassionate and kind as it was to have other successes.
“We owe who we are to each other and to our teachers and our parents, in addition to ourselves,” DiMeo said.
Salutatorian Josh Seidler told his classmates that he spent his senior year looking for meaning in the last of everything, hoping to find closure, but he realized that nothing was ending.
“We are celebrating not because school is over, but we’ve only just begun,” he said. “Ask yourselves what all of this means to us, and take that into the future.”
Valedictorian Andrew Puseman told the audience about the life lessons he learned during high school such as enjoying the little things, which not only make the good days better but the difficult days better, too. The others were to de-stress, and that you are loved whether you get an A or an F.
“A meaningful life is not measured in things,” Puseman said. “It’s the impact we make on (people). Make it positive.”
Contact Deb Hurley Brobst at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-350-1041.