St. Edmond class bids farewell

At least 3 graduate early

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Sean Flaherty made the best of a bad situation Sunday as he waves to the crowd with one of his crutches after getting his diploma at St. Edmond Catholic High School. Flaherty broke his ankle a few weeks ago.

The 47 members of the St. Edmond High School Class of 2018 said their final goodbyes to the school Sunday afternoon at the 63rd commencement.

Three of them, through hard work and sacrifice, were getting to graduate a year early.

Molly Lennon was among them.

“I took a lot of extra classes,” she said. “No study halls.”

The second early graduate, Lillian Fitzgerald, combined two years into one.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Sam Loerts and Emma Hergenreter walk proudly into the gym to receive their diplomas at the 63rd commencement at St. Edmond Catholic High School Sunday afternoon.

“I took my senior year and junior year together,” she said. “It was a lot of work.”

She also cut out a lot of extracurricular activities.

“I just concentrated on school,” she said.

The final early graduate was Carley Halligan.

“I started in eighth grade taking extra math classes,” she said. “It just went on from there.”

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen The St. Edmond Catholic High School Class of 2018 gathers in the hall for one last prayer together Sunday afternoon before the start of commencement.

She also took summer classes and confined her extracurricular activities to one thing.

“I did a lot of music stuff,” she said.

Another member of the class, Isaac Lursen, was actually attending his second graduation. He earned a degree from Iowa Central Community College. He was awarded his diploma there on May 10.

St. Edmond President Mary Gibb recognized not only the students, but also her staff, their parents, grandparents and others who’ve supported them along their academic careers. She will miss them.

“I want to express my gratitude for your leadership this past year,” she said.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Framed by a library table covered with coat hangers, phones and car keys, some of the Class of 2018 get ready to line up for graduation Sunday afternoon at St. Edmond Catholic High School.

She said that the graduating class had been awarded more than $650,000 in scholarships and had accepted about $470,000. They also earned 818 college credits.

“That’s double over last year,” she said.

Class speakers were Katelyn Finnegan and Audrey Kolacia.

Finnegan spoke about her favorite place to walk, a trail in Dolliver Memorial State Park. She compared her chosen path there, to life’s journey. A trek that sometimes, like the path, has rough stones and gravel on it.

“Remember,” Finnegan said. “They’re a fraction of your size. The most difficult path is always easier with a friend and once you reach the top, don’t forget to turn around and help those behind you.”

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen The St. Edmond Catholic High School Class of 2018 follows tradition Sunday afternoon as they toss their caps into the air after singing the school song around the flag pole.

Kolacia shared memories of the class’ time at St. Edmond.

“In sixth grade,” she said. “We enjoyed the new freedom of being able to roam the halls without a teacher watching our every move.”

She thanked the teachers, counselors and other staff.

“We really do appreciate what you’ve done for us,” she said.

She left her class with one final thought.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen MaKayla Allison, at left, along with Molly Lennon, right, pretend to be asleep for a picture before the start of the 63rd commencement at St. Edmond Catholic High School.

“You’ll never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory,” she said.

One of the graduates, Sean Flaherty, got to ride around the commencement. Well, actually, only part of him got to ride. Flaherty had broken his ankle several weeks ago and had been provided with a small scooter for his bent leg.

He made the best of it.

“You just got to embrace it,” he said.

He did, as he got up to get his diploma, he left the scooter at the edge of the stage and proceeded on crutches. He used them to wave at the crowd, then lacking a free hand, grabbed his diploma with his teeth.

“I’m trying to make everyone laugh.” he joked.

After the commencement, the students did their traditional cap toss in front of the building after singing the school song.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen The St. Edmond Catholic High School Class of 2018 gathers in a circle Sunday morning as class president Haley Ledford talks to them one last time as a group.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen St. Edmond Catholic Schools teacher Emily Van Egmond goes over the graduation plans with Cade Naughton and Jack Rasmussen, right. The paid had missed rehearsal due to a sports event.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen As a graduate and well wisher fist pump in the foreground, St. Edmond graduate Nelson Cook poses with his siblings Lydia Verschoor, 14, at left, Rogan Cook, 6, and Jacob Cook, 16, right, following commencement Sunday afternoon.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Sean Flaherty, at right, accompanied by Olivia Huss, smiles as he rolls back down the aisle following commencement Sunday afternoon at St. Edmond Catholic High School. Flaherty broke his ankle several weeks ago.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Sam Loerts looks a little nerveous as he’s about to take the stage to receive his diploma Sunday afternoon during the St. Edmond Catholic High School commencement. Loerts was one of the first students in line.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Attending his second graduation, this time in green, Isaac Lursen is recognized Sunday afternoon at the St. Edmond Catholic High School commencement. Lursen graduated from Iowa Central Community College May 10.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen Olivia Carlson uses her phone Sunday to make sure everything is just in the right place as she prepares for the 63rd commencement at St. Edmond Catholic High School.