Kaua‘i High School Class of 2007 graduates received their diplomas Friday evening at Antone Kona Vidinha Jr. Stadium and then skipped, danced, strutted and even backflipped down the red carpet leading away from the stage.
Almost 250 graduating seniors cheered their classmates while parents, friends and relatives applauded, watched and waved from the stands.
Class valedictorians Lauren Duyanen Malones and Miki Ueoka delivered speeches about embracing the future, never giving up, never settling and remembering the “foundation of friendship” built on the “simple joys” from Kauai High School. Megan Vento earned salutatorian honors.
Student body president Stacy Terry recalled how the class evolved through the years.
The Class of 2007 endured school uniforms, passed and failed driver’s tests, faced suspensions for doing donuts in the football field, camped and cooked out and “our parents’ blood pressure will never be the same,” she said.
“It’s the real world now,” said Jeff Davidson, who was there with his wife to watch their son Keith graduate. “It’s been a long road, but it’s been fun.”
Tracy Alcos, graduating senior Pono Matthews’ mother, wished her son and the rest of his class “the best of luck,” “to choose the right path” and “make us proud.”
“I hope he can handle the cold,” she added, sharing her son’s intention to study and play football at the University of Montana-Western.
Finding a bench and shade prior to the procession, graduates Kaniela Matsushima, Jester Bautista, Treston Caberto-Raco, Ian Burgonio and Theodore Cabulisan discussed plans to attend college on O‘ahu and at Sacramento, study science and auto tech, become a pilot and an astronaut.
“Freedom,” they said, is what excites them most about finishing high school.
Kaua‘i High S chool Principal Linda Smith declared the class “ready to meet life’s challenges with interest, strength and maturity.”
• Nathan Eagle, staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 224) or email@example.com.