Fare Thee Well Lovejoy Seniors
May 31, 2019 - On the final day of school for LISD, seniors at Lovejoy High School held to tradition as they took one last walk through the hallways, out the back door and then through the courtyard that was lined with underclassmen, staff and parents.
On Aug. 20, 2018, these same seniors walked into the school as a group on the first day of school. On that day, during a pre-event interview, senior Carson Collins said that one of his senior year goals was to enjoy playing his last season of high school football. He now describes highlights of the season as breaking the school record for passing yards in a game and throwing a 50-yard touchdown pass on his very last play of the season. He said, “The moments I shared with my teammates and coaches will always be remembered. It was the most fun season I have had.” Regarding what he believes he will miss most about LHS, Collins said, “I will miss the friendships and relationships I have built the most, not only with friends, but with teachers, coaches, and staff members too. Everyone has always been so friendly and shown genuine care for me, not just to me as a student or player but more as a person.” He said he feels bittersweet about leaving Lovejoy, “All of my family is here, and it will not be an easy transition to college, but I am ready and excited for the future and Lovejoy has prepared me well for that.” Collins will attend University of Tulsa where he will play football and study finance.
After watching her son, Jonathan Lawrence, walk in the senior walk, Lisa Lawrence described her feelings, “I feel sad. He is going off and starting a new adventure. If I did a good job, he’ll come back and be a success.” Holly Raforth, mother of Reagan Raforth, commiserated with Lisa Lawrence in that she was also sad while watching this LHS tradition, “I’ve been crying for over a week. This (going to LHS) has been my life for 10 years. I will miss all the volunteering and the community.” Reagan’s grandmother, Nancy Easley said, “As a teacher for 44 years, I think LISD is the most superior school district in the state.” Regarding watching her son Luke Ledebur walk the senior walk, Christi Ledebur said, “It was very emotional, very sad. Things have gone by way too quickly.” Luke said he felt, “Kind of happy. I’m ready for summer and the next chapter of my life.” Posing for a photo in front of the school after the walk were friends Aubrie Shinedling and Madison Valdez. Valdez said, “This day felt like a dream. It was the best and worst of days, knowing that I will never come back to school here and will be starting something new.” Aubrie said she felt this day was long-overdue, “I’ve been emotionally ready to graduate for three years.” Linda Reed – Shinedling, mother of Aubrie Shinedling said, “I feel very blessed that she attended such a great school. I’m extremely proud of how hard they worked. They are ready to be successful in the world.”
Graduation practice was held before the senior walk. Seniors were free to leave after completing the walk. Underclassman returned to class to finish their final exam and were released at noon to rollick in all things summer.