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‘A Little Bit of Kearsarge in Our Hearts’

  • Aiden Banks and Justin Lamphear relax before the beginning of graduation ceremonies at Kearsarge Regional High School yesterday. (Medora Hebert photograph)

    Aiden Banks and Justin Lamphear relax before the beginning of graduation ceremonies at Kearsarge Regional High School yesterday. (Medora Hebert photograph) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Margaret Bolger, vice president of the Class of 2013, hands sunflower to a fellow Kearsarge Regional High School graduate at yesterday’s commencement ceremony. The class officers handed a sunflower to their classmates after they received diplomas. With Bolger is Dorothy Parsons, the class president. (Medora Hebert photograph)

    Margaret Bolger, vice president of the Class of 2013, hands sunflower to a fellow Kearsarge Regional High School graduate at yesterday’s commencement ceremony. The class officers handed a sunflower to their classmates after they received diplomas. With Bolger is Dorothy Parsons, the class president. (Medora Hebert photograph) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Aiden Banks and Justin Lamphear relax before the beginning of graduation ceremonies at Kearsarge Regional High School yesterday. (Medora Hebert photograph)
  • Margaret Bolger, vice president of the Class of 2013, hands sunflower to a fellow Kearsarge Regional High School graduate at yesterday’s commencement ceremony. The class officers handed a sunflower to their classmates after they received diplomas. With Bolger is Dorothy Parsons, the class president. (Medora Hebert photograph)

North Sutton, N.H. — On a sun-splashed afternoon, Kearsarge Regional High School’s Class of 2013 was praised for its accomplishments inside and outside the classroom yesterday during graduation exercises held on the football field.

“It is a high bar you have set,” said Superintendent of Schools Jerome Frew. “You’ve done a wonderful job and we congratulate you. We congratulate all classes, but this one is a little special.”

Before Frew came to the lectern, high school Principal James Daley ran through a list of the accomplishments, asking the students involved to stand and be recognized.

He called on state champions, a girls team that won a sportsmanship award, along with many others who excelled in the classroom, the arts and community service.

“This is just a sampling of the talent, courage, caring and dedication found in the Class of 2013,” Daley said. “You will be missed.”

Class President Dorothy Parsons noted that had the graduates completed just the minimum of 20 hours of community service, the total would have approached 2,700. But the actual number of hours topped 4,700, she said, prompting loud applause.

Echoing Frew’s comment about setting the bar high, Parsons said she was proud of the class. And while they will take different paths now, Parsons said they should “always remember what a group like ours is able to accomplish.”

As is tradition at Kearsarge, the ceremony began with faculty moving between lines of graduates, giving hugs, handshakes and congratulations as Andrew Bragg played Scotland the Brave and The Rose of Allendale on piano.

Then, with Will Ogmundson, a 1995 Kearsarge graduate playing Pomp and Circumstance, the class marched down the center aisle to the stage.

Kindergartners, holding yellow flags and wearing shirts emblazoned with “Class of 2025,” sang God Bless America and recited the Pledge of Allegiance. The high school choir sang the national anthem and gave a beautiful rendition of the 1970s Bill Withers song, Lean on Me.

Salutatorian Olivia Carle, who will attend Tufts University in the fall, said she struggled to develop an idea for her speech.

“It’s been a long journey for all of us,” Carle began. “But we are here and we’ve changed.”

Carle eventually settled on the concept of finding truth, she said.

“I hope you will take time and look around and ask why? Ask what? It is crucial for the movement of the world and you have always been a part of the world,” Carle said.

“So search for individual truth. Look within yourself. Wonder at nature. Question others.

“Congratulations truth seekers. You are never done,” she concluded.

Valedictorian Caitlin Jo Anderson will study biology at Dartmouth College fall. In her remarks, she recounted how she and her classmates grew and matured from their first days in high school and forged strong relationships with each other and teachers. They became state champions, all-star musicians, chefs, dancers, writers and more, and as they go their separate ways, they will always carry “a little bit of Kearsarge in our hearts.

“We will never lose the memories and we will never forget the relationships, the school and the people who helped make us who we are today,” Anderson said.

Yesterday’s ceremony paid tribute to Ernest Mills, who is retiring after 25 years as music director. The 2013 yearbook is dedicated to him.

Daley praised Mills for his teaching, performing, character development and community spirit.

Parents were thanked for their “sacrifice, guidance, and support” for the Kearsarge School District.

“Thank you also for trusting us with your most valuable possession,” said Daley, who also thanked the faculty for its influence on the students.

The ceremony concluded with fireworks and a recessional song, Highland Cathedral, as students left the stage and mingled with family and friends for photographs.

Patrick O’Grady can be reached at ogrady56@yahoo.com.

Class of 2013

Here are the 2013 graduates of Kearsarge High School and their plans, as provided by the school:

Teagan Adams, working; Lauren Adie, Colby-Sawyer College; Nathan Akins, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Peter Allen, Plymouth State; Emily Allie, gap year/Orange Coast College; Caitlin Anderson, Dartmouth College; Janet Augeri, Southern New Hampshire Univ.; Dominique Badger, New England School of Hair Design; Monfed Badilla; Aiden Banks, New England College; Jordan Barthol, Norwich University; Sarah Beattie, Emby-Riddle Aeronautical University; James Beltz, Pacific University; George Benoit, working; Timothy Berube, Worcester Polytechnic Institute; Jordan Bixby, River Valley Community College; Alyssa Blair, American Red Cross LNA Program; Kelsey Blake, Michaels School of Hair Design; Taylor Blake, Michaels School of Hair Design; Margaret Bolger, gap year/St. Lawrence University; Thatcher Bourcier, Southern Maine Community College; Gemma Bready, Colby College; Catherine Broom, University of New Hampshire; Georgia Anne Brown, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Stephanie Carbee, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Olivia Carle, Tufts University; Colin Carson, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Gabriel Carter, Franklin Pierce University; Jessie Carter, New England College; William Chandler, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Amelia Charles, working; Amanda Charnley, working; Haley Charnley, working; Bradly Donnelly, Marine Corps; Stephen Donohue; Mary Dubie, Keene State College; Cote Dupuis, Army; Brendan Eastman, working; Connor Fantasia Sullivan, New England College; John Fantasia, working; Alexandra Folcik, Florida Institute of Technology; Marissa France, University of New Hampshire; Aidan Gainor, Brandeis University; Oliver Gallo, St. Michael’s College; Benjamin Gambino, University of New Hampshire; Shannon Hallenborg, Colby-Sawyer College; Brandon Hansen; Natalie Hansen ; Carolyn Haron, University of New England; Dale Harrington, working; Jason Harrington, University of New Hampshire; Erik Hauck, University of New Hampshire; Shelby Hearne, New England College; Sarah Henry, Americorps; Crystal Hinz ; Chloe Hodgdon, working; MacKenzie Hogle, New England College; Michael Horten, University of New Hampshire; Corey Jerome, Newbury College; Jacob Jones; Alison Josefiak, University of New Hampshire; Desiree Kalloch, Colby-Sawyer College; Jeffrey Kozikowski, Emmanuel College; Justin Lamphear, New England College; Casey Laughinghouse, University of New Hampshire; Tucker Lecaroz, Florida Gulf Coast University; Timothy Lewis, Bowling Green State University; Zachary Lobdell, working; Elizabeth Lovett, Keene State College; Taylor Lucey, Arizona State University; Robert Lutz, Landmark College; Emma MacAllister, Colby-Sawyer College; Brian Magistro, New England College; Brianne Maguire; Kenneth Manley, working; Michaela Mann, Gap year; Peter Martin, College of the Atlantic; Emily Mecus, New England College; Thomas Merullo, working; Darienne Messer, University of New Hampshire; Vincente Metrano; Caitlyn Milton, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Lyndsey Milton; Aryn Morcom, Gap year; Emily Morcom, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Corinna Moskal, Goucher College; Holly Mulhern, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Christopher Navarro, Worchester Polytechnic Institute; Zoey Neidozetko, Keene State College; Wade O’Neil, New England College; Daniel Orlando, Paul Smith College; Hannah Parenteau, working; Dorothy Parsons, Skidmore College; Peter Payson, Work; Mary Margaret Pickman, St. Michael’s College; Devon Pike, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Tyler Plante, New Hampshire Technical Institute; James Powers, working; Hugh Ramirez, Lasell College; Jonathan Ray; Charles Reed, working; Marissa Rondeau; Christiana Ross, Bentley University; Edmund Rowell, University of Northwestern Ohio; Kelsey Ruff, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Samuel Rushia; Victoria Sabo, Unity College; Katherine Salvatore; Paige Sayles, Manchester Community College; Luke Seminara; Bethany Slack, Gap year; Alicia Souliotis, University of New Hampshire; Georgia Souliotis, University of New Hampshire; Jeffrey Stewart, working; Connor Stiles; Philip Tatro, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Conor Terhune, Colorado College; Jennifer Thomas, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Elyssa Thompson, working; Samuel Tucker, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Samuel Van Etten, Hobart and William Smith Colleges; Rose Marie Vanderwerff, Plymouth State; Michael West, working; Alexander Wilson, Northeastern University; Haylie Wilson, Plymouth State; Alexandra Wood, Plymouth State; Katlyn Wyatt, Bryant University.

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Kearsarge Regional High School graduates received their diplomas in a commencement ceremony on school grounds in North Sutton, N.H., on June 15, 2013. Medora Hebert photographs …