Crothersville seniors make their mark


The 26 members of the Crothersville High School Class of 2020 were born when the world was grieving from the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

On Friday, they graduated as the world is grieving from a pandemic.

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March 13 was their last day in the classroom together because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, they had their senior trip, senior picnic, spring sports, prom and more canceled.

The pandemic, however, was not about to take away a special time in their lives — graduation.

That was the message from Valedictorian Carson Farmer while delivering his speech onstage in the school parking lot with his classmates and family members listening from their vehicles.

The school’s 124th commencement ceremony is one everyone will long remember.

“Not one person who is not a senior in the Class of 2020 has experienced what we have for the past nine weeks,” Farmer said. “Do not let anyone minimize that. It is time to let go of what we thought this time should look like for us and learn to find joy in the story we are currently living. This is a time to reflect on the memories that we have made during our years together.”

Farmer thanked school administration and faculty and class sponsors Angie Keasler and Brandy Henry for helping the class get through a difficult end to its senior year.

He also reflected on the positives over the years that brought the class together, from attending preschool in town to playing sports to participating in programs to prepare for life after high school.

Farmer also shared a letter recently received from their kindergarten teacher, Ann McCollom, who said the students walked into her room and her heart 13 years ago.

“We worked hard but had so much fun,” McCollom wrote. “Memories flood my mind every time I see you on the playing field, see your name in the paper or your picture on social media announcing another accomplishment. I knew from long ago that one day each of you would make your mark.”

Now, Farmer said it’s time for the seniors to make their mark.

“What we have endured the last few months of quarantine may be the best lesson of our last 13 years,” he said. “Do not take any day, anything or anyone for granted. The future is still ahead waiting for each one of us. Do amazing things, and as Mrs. McCollum said, we are strong and resilient. We pulled off the best skip day ever with perfect 20/20 vision. Now, let us go make our mark.”

Salutatorian Makinzee Isley said while she didn’t attend school in Crothersville as long as many of her classmates, she appreciates everyone for welcoming her and making the transition easier.

Other adjustments came a couple of months ago when the pandemic changed everyone’s lives, and Isley said even though most of the senior traditions were taken away, that brought the class much closer.

“This issue doesn’t define us but shapes us into even stronger individuals than what we were in the beginning of our journey,” she said.

While the class members will now follow different paths, Isley said they are all ready for what’s next.

“Today, we close a very important chapter of our lives, a chapter that has shaped us, opened us up to a number of possibilities and that has prepared us for the future,” she said.

“I want each one of you to realize that all of the long hours, sleepless nights and countless assignments and tests have brought us here and were all worth it,” she told her classmates. “Today shouldn’t be thought of as a goodbye but a see you later because we all may cross paths again in the years ahead. The Class of 2020 is the class to be remembered, and we’ll make our mark on the world.”

Following the ceremony, the graduates participated in a parade through town to allow the community to show its support.