After several hours spent in the classroom, on homework and in extracurricular activities PPHS seniors wore their red and black robes with a sense of accomplishment.
The rainy weather did not damper the mood of the graduating seniors, and the ceremony opened with a welcoming speech by senior class president Katie Wilson. After the Pledge of Allegiance, senior Chase Likens sang the National Anthem. National Honor Society president Jade Gray then introduced class salutatorian, Jamie Bush, and class valedictorian, John Leslie.
Bush addressed her fellow students by telling them to remember and reflect on their lives up to graduation.
“It has taken 13 long years but we have finally made it,” she said. “I encourage each of you to take this day and make it a day of reflection... we may not remember the names or faces of all of our classmates, but it is the feeling of belonging we will remember.”
Bush also emphasized the importance of the class of 2009 being the first to graduate from the new Point Pleasant Junior Senior High School.
“My promise to you is that as long as you stay true to yourself and faith all things will work out in the end,” she said.
Class valedictorian John Leslie also stressed the importance of graduation with his classmates.
“As we look back we recollect on all the memories made during our time together. However, today we must not only look back but we must also envision the future,” Leslie said. “Now we are faced with the challenge of taking action and transforming our dreams from fantasy to reality.”
He added that the goals his classmates make will influence their lives, and stressed the importance of persevering to stay on task.
“We will achieve greatness because we are Point Pleasant High School’s Class of 2009,” Leslie said.
Following Leslie’s speech, PPHS Principal William Cottrill addressed the graduating seniors. He praised them for their multitude of accomplishments, including $1.4 million in scholarships and the fact that more than 80 percent of the class are choosing to further their education.
“As the first class of Point Pleasant Junior Senior High School you have laid the foundation of striving for excellence with absolutely not exceptions,” Cottrill said.
Those were words of encouragement to the class as members turned their tassels and prepared for the next journey of their lives.
Members of the senior class are Phillip Michael Allen, Tanisha Renea Armstrong, Jodie Heaven Arthur, Kayla Ann Barnett Arthur, Whitney Donyelle Bailey, Zackary Russell Ball, Jared Henry Bartee, Travis Ray Bays, Gina Lynn Bennett, Jennifer Marie Black, Brianna Darlene Blair, James Arnold Blankenship;
Timothy Dale Blankenship, Anthony Allen Blessing, Nina Lucrechia Mae Blessing, Cassie Ann Bonecutter, Kari Rae Bonecutter, Orion Dean Briel, Kimberly Dawn Brown, Brittany Ryan Burdette, Jessica Mae Burdette, Olivia Lane Burdette, Michael Worthy Burris, Jeffrey Burton, Jamie Kristen Bush, Shane Donovan Bush;
Caleigh Ann Cale, Christopher Brian Campbell, Marcus Wade Casto, Lisa May Chason, Cole Allen Chesson, Cody Mackenzie Clemente, Kara Michelle Cochran, Rebekah Kay Cochran, Sarah Elizabeth Cochran, Amberle Nicole Copley, Alyssa Devin Cottrill, Dakota Ryan Coughenour, George Edward Crump III, Timothy John Dalton;
Timothy Chase Daugherty, Rochelle Leigh Davis, Cameron Sprage Deal, Nathan Roy Dean, Justin Keith DeWitt, Treg Z. Dodson, Jordan Lea Duncan, Shawna Michaella Duncan, Sharon Renee Dunn, Cody Austin Durst, Franklin Scott Eaves, Christopher Michael Estrada, Megan Ann Fields, Melissa Nicole Fields, Amber Dawn Fillinger, Mark Anthony Fooce Jr., Emily Marie Fowler, James Curtis Garrett;
Randi Michele Gleason, Tyler Grant, Jade Erin Gray, Tyler Justin Green, Steven Franklin Grimm, Rebecca Jane Hall, KateLynn Beth Harmon, Brittany Faye Hayes, Robert Wesley Henry II, Nathan Cadman Hester, Michael David Hineman, Ryan Michael Hively, Emily Katherine Holcomb, Leigh Ann Huddleston, Brandi Renee Hudson, Jeremy Collins Hunt, Amanda Lynn Hupp, Jacob Logan Jarrell;
Cathleen Annissa Johnson, Emily Kay Jones, Tyson Philip Jones, Steven Ray Kimberling, Cassandra Irene Kinniard, Traci Lynn Kirker, Candy Nicole Landers, Amber Nicole Landfried, Keith Allen Lane, Kyle Adam Lee, Jeremy David Legg, Angelica Camille Leonard, Felicia Danielle Leport, William David Maxwell Leport, John Robert Leslie, Chase Joseph Likens, Chase Evan Buck Liptrap, William Paul Lloyd Jr.;
Charles Kenneth Longwell, Taylor Rae Looney, Stephen James Machir, Stephen Lee Martin II, Brittany Dawn Matheny, Erinn Nicole Mayes, Kristen Linette Mayes, Jessica Lynn McCarthy, Amanda Kaysie McCullough, Amanda Faye McDonald, Nicholas Allen McKendree, Adam Guy McWilliams, Sarah Elizabeth Milhoan, Jennifer Lynn Miller, Sabrina Michelle Miller, Brandi Lee Mitchell, Derek Lee Mitchell, Ashley Nicole Morris;
Michael Joseph Ethan Moyer, James Tevin Izak Mullen, Cody Lee Mullens, Olivia Stephanie-Elizabeth Napora, Shirley Renee Nichols, Franklin Nelson Nott III, Keith Adam Nutter, William Ryan O’Hara, Zackrey Scott Parsons, Stephanie Lynn Patterson, Steven Andrew Perry, Lora Ann Price, Jacob Tyler Rainey, Shawn Anthony Rhodes, Harrison Martin Roach, Dustin Ray Robinson, Dennis Leslie Rodgers II;
Lucas Seth Rogers, Rhonda Nicole Rogers, Billie Joe Hannah Rollins, Tiffany Amber Roub, Tiffany Rae Roush, Jared Clayton Searls, Kimberly Renee See, Daniel Malcolm Settle, Alisha Beth Shamblin, Shelby Ray Shuler, Cody Albert Slayton, Breanna Tyler Smith, Jennifer Lee Smith, Josie Rachelle Smith;
Anna Elizabeth Sommer, Emily Claire Sommer, Jonathan Edward Spencer, Catherine Elizabeth Sprouse, Ashley Nichole Stallman, Jessica Ann Stanley, Andrew Garrett Stepp, Michael Robert Strange, Ashlie Elizabeth Supple, Tessa Ann Tarker, Cody Brian Taylor, Karissa Mae Taylor, John Christopher Thompson Jr., Matthew David Thompson, Jennifer Leigh Thornton, Cass Lee Vaughn, Eric David Veith;
Jennifer Lynne Walker, Joseph Louis Walker Jr., Sarah Jane Walker, Christopher Shaun Wallace, Jessie Nicole Wamsley, Shana Nicole Wamsley, Owen Otieno Wasonga, Jenna Gail Watterson, Jennifer Dale Watterson, Justin Robert Weaver, Josephine Renee Weethee, Jennifer Lee Wickline, Katelyn Rose Wilson, Joshua Allen Wolfe, Hannah Ruth Workman, McKensie Brook Wright, Tessa Nicole Wyant and Charles Emmitt Zirkle.
In addition, honorary diplomas were given to Pablo Mejia Corredor, Jesper Thor Funch Poulsen and Diego Sacido Del Rio.