125 Commencement of AHS celebrates 61 graduates


The customary cap toss signaling the end of the 125th Commencement of Anaconda High School shows the remnants of silly string and confetti on the Memorial Gymnasium floor. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO

Although the number of graduates was one of the smallest ever at Anaconda High, joy, exuberance and the occasional air horn wished the 61 individuals farewell during the 125th Commencement of AHS Friday, June 2, at Memorial Gymnasium.


Michael Hessler, left, and Michaela Cortright, right, sit beside the chair belonging to Macy Fitzgerald, who was in intensive care in Missoula following an equine accident the day prior to graduation. It was used to collect roses from each classmate as they filed into Memorial Gymnasium as a sign of friendship. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO

Throughout the ceremony, these students had heavy hearts. Macy Fitzgerald, a member of the Top 5, was injured in a equine accident and unable to attend. As each student filed into the seating area, they placed a rose on the chair she was supposed to be sitting in as a sign of their collective friendship.

All told, 42 of the 61 graduating seniors earned a scholarship totaling $292,225.

Standing with Fitzgerald in spirit, Michaela Cortright, Michael Hessler, Kyra Moreni and Hailey Rasmussen each delivered short but inspirational speeches directed to their classmates and educators. (Each individual speech is available below)

Michaela Cortright

Hailey Rasmussen

Michael Hessler

Macy Fitzgerald (read by Rasmussen)

Kyra Moreni

The keynote address was given by AHS educator Mrs. Erin Senst, one of the most well-respected teachers in the school.

Broadcast sponsors Knight and Dahood Law Offices, GTown Sound, AWARE Inc. and KANA 580 AM are pleased to provide a copy of the commencement. To obtain a copy of the ceremony in its entirety, send an email to bhempstead@aware-inc.org or call KANA at 563-7119.

Below are a collection of photos from the evening:


Seniors sing along with the AHS alma mater. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Terrance Fitzpatrick is escorted by Chris Stetzner to receive his diploma. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Brett Walund receives his diploma from SD 10 Board of Trustees chair Bryan Lorengo. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Serena Staley is greeted by AHS principal Shawn Hansen


Jordan Nelson is greeted by her father, AHS educator Carlton Nelson. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Libby Jorgensen shakes hands with AHS vice principal and activities director Allen Green. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Kayne Cobban, left, and Kayne Bryant give one another a high five after being announced for receiving scholarships. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Natalie Gill celebrates with her family in the stands. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


AHS faculty and student body stand for the alma mater. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


The Anaconda High Choraleers, led by director Kim Lorengo, perform “Little Wonders” during the commencement. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO


Brannon Cook was in a pointing kind of mood Friday. PHOTO COPYRIGHT CS PHOTO