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2017 High School Graduation

A dozen members of the Marais des Cygnes Valley High School Class of 2017 received their diplomas and several scholarship awards during the school’s graduation ceremony Sunday afternoon in the MdCV High School gym, in Melvern. Graduates entered the auditorium with the music of “Pomp and Circumstance,” where all attendees were welcomed by MdCV High School Salutatorian Peyton Johnson. Johnson acknowledged the teachers and staff present who had helped the class of 2017 achieve the goal of graduating. Graduates were presented with awards, announced by Laurel Ladewig, MdCV counselor, (see awards below). The presentation was followed by the graduate speeches. Johnson was the first to speak. He said graduation is not the end goal, rather a larger part of the journey, where there will be obstacles and missed exits, potholes and roadblocks. He reminded his classmates that they are not alone on their journey. “Nothing worthwhile is easy, and that includes making the most of our futures,” Johnson said. “We will keep pushing because we know we can achieve our dreams, and because we are worth it.” Valedictorian Leon Sluder thanked family, friends, faculty and fellow students for attending the celebration of this milestone. “We have formed bonds and relationships with others, even though quite a number of us have only arrived in the most recent years,” he said. He looked back on the time and effort put in by parents, teachers, mentors, coaches and community members to get them where they are today, at graduation. “They have all invested in a future that we will ultimately choose for ourselves,” he said. “Whatever vocation takes you on that next adventure, remember that you owe it to those here today to be the best at that which you choose to do.” “This is the end of a significant chapter in our lives,” he said. “The story is not over, the book has not been closed, each of us is writing our own story.” Ladewig then introduced the senior class. Dr. Michelle Schulze presented the Class of 2017 and Greg McCurdy and Jamie Sowers presented diplomas. Graduating senior Kayden Dickey gave the closing speech and thanked everyone for attending. “We have made a lot of memories through the years, and being a really small class, we have been able to grow into sort of a family,” he said. Attendants were Josey Weimer and Noah Criqui, and procession leaders were Kali Holt and Jevan Gregg.


MdCV Class of 2017 graduates 12 MdCV student awards, scholarships Marais des Cygnes Valley High School has announced student awards and scholarships. Those named are listed below. Citizenship Awards – Allison Smith and Kayden Dickey Dale Dennis Excellence in Education Award – Leon Sluder Governor’s Scholar – Leon Sluder Community Service Awards – Leon Sluder Carol and Jessie Thurston Memorial – Samantha Harris Barb Kellum Memorial Scholarship – Allison Smith MdCV Booster Club – Leon Sluder Woodward, Belt, Heilmann, Arb, American Legion and Auxiliary Scholarship – Leon Sluder Wendell Allison Memorial – Samantha Harris and Leon Sluder MdCV FFA Scholarship – Kaden Dickey and Leon Sluder Don Lichtenauer Family Scholarship – Kayden Dickey and Leon Sluder Melvern Marais des Cygnes Alumni Association – Leon Sluder Lala Beth Weis Memorial – Leon Sluder Philip Spencer Memorial Scholarship – Osage County Fire District No. 3 – Samantha Harris Quenemo Pride – Leon Sluder Garard Family Scholarship – Peyton Johnson Lawrence Lester McNabb Technical Scholarship – Samantha Harris Lawrence Lester McNabb Scholarship – Leon Sluder (article by the Osage County Herald-Chronicle) (pictures by Tammy Vanderpool)



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