Quitman bids adieu to ‘21 graduates

By Larry Tucker
Posted 5/27/21

A full capacity crowd at Delbert Ballard Memorial Gym was on hand to honor the 76-member Quitman High School 2021 graduating class. The ceremony was moved indoors due to inclement weather Friday.

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Quitman bids adieu to ‘21 graduates


A full capacity crowd at Delbert Ballard Memorial Gym was on hand to honor the 76-member Quitman High School 2021 graduating class. The ceremony was moved indoors due to inclement weather Friday.

After the procession of graduates, the crowd rose for a stirring rendition of the National Anthem by graduating senior Bobby Irwin. Gatha Davis and Arturo Delgadillo led the pledges of allegiance followed by an opening prayer from Kathryn Hudman.

Salutatorian Lucy Brannon challenged her classmates.  “But before we throw up our caps and walk out those doors as a bunch of has-beens, I want to leave you with a quote from one of my favorite movies. In the film “We Bought a Zoo,” Benjamin Mee tells his son ‘Sometimes all you need is 20 seconds of insane courage. Just literally, 20 seconds of just embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it.’ Tomorrow we get a clean slate. We will start a new job or go to a new school surrounded by people who have no idea what we’ve done or who we are, and each of us has the opportunity to choose greatness and to find our passion,” Brannon remarked. “When 20 seconds has the potential to change your life, don’t shy away from it. Each of you has a gift and maybe you have known yours since kindergarten or maybe you haven’t found it just yet. But I want each of you to use your gifts to make a change for the better in this world wherever you end up. Twenty seconds isn’t a very long time and neither is the amount of time we each have left in our lives to make an impact, so use it wisely. It is now our turn to decide where the road will take us.” 

Valedictorian Kaitlynn Barnett was next at the podium. “Your life after today, is solely your own. Your life after today is the beginning of new journeys and the new stories that you will make from here on out. And if there is one piece of advice I can give you, it is to take advantage of it. Live an intentional life. Make every decision purposeful, because the decisions you make today are going to steer the course of your tomorrow. None of our futures are written in stone and because of this, you can decide who you want to be,” Barnett encouraged. “Whether it is in the workforce, higher education or military, strive to be a better you than you were yesterday. I know that some days this is going to be hard and you are going to arrive at points in your life where you want to give up, but just remember that your life is going to flash by in the blink of an eye, and in the end you don’t want to be living in regret. Class of 2021, starting today, live the rest of your lives with purpose and continue telling the stories of where all of our lives began, because those stories are worth telling and worth listening to.”

A class history covering from kindergarten through their senior year was given by Brannon, Keeley Glidewell, Lindsey Hornaday and Kaiti Kelley. The class of 2021 left one seat open on the front row for classmate Ally Baker who passed away during their early elementary years.

Red Cord high honor graduates were Barnett, Brannon, Aiden Corrior, Keeley Glidewell, Oscar Roman, Landon Peckham and Lexie Wilson. Gold Cord honor graduates with at least a cumulative 3.85 grade point average were Kathryn Hudman, Kaitlyn Kelley and Katelyn Manuel. A military cord was worn by graduate Stephen Ortiz who is going to the United States Army. 

The QISD school board awarded the diplomas to the class followed by the benediction by Oscar Roman. Valedictorian and Senior Class President Barnett gave the dismissal which included the singing of the alma mater.

Graduation caps were tossed and the Class of 2021 became history.