CENTENARY — Gallia Academy High School celebrated another graduating class with an official commencement ceremony Friday evening. All together 138 seniors made the walk across the stage having completed the requirements necessary for graduation.
“It’s hard to believe 30 years ago today, I was in these seats graduating from Gallia Academy High School, so a big congratulations to the class of 2018,” said Superintendent Craig Wright. “In thinking about what to speak about tonight, the thing that was difficult was these kids are so close to me, in fact my son is graduating tonight so that makes it so much more emotional. It has been an honor to watch them grow from adolescence into adulthood.”
The graduating class of 2018 was well represented in a variety of ways. Two seniors have enlisted for military service. Numerous students graduated as National Honor Society members. Over one million dollars in scholarship money has been awarded to this graduating class as a whole. Several students have been accepted into prestigious programs in higher education for music, science, math, engineering, and other fields.
Senior students were not the only individuals honored for completing their time at GAHS. Brack Houchens, a 35 year teacher at Gallia Academy attended his final graduation as a teacher, retiring from teaching government and history.
“Tonight is about our seniors and their families here. Mr. Houchens has given 35 years of service to this school, this district, to this community,” Said Principal Josh Donley. “Mr. Houchens is the definition of class and dignity, it has been an honor to work with you, I mean that.”
The top ten percent of the class was represented on stage by six students — Ezra Blain, Zachary Bokal, Taae Hamid, Adam Sickels, Kaden Thomas, and Julianna Yates. Each of these students, while sufficiently awarded throughout the evening, gave final words to their classmates and families as graduating seniors.
“These four years have really flown by, it seems like freshman year was only yesterday. This final year was one of the most exciting years of my life. I have developed many close friendships, especially in my choir,” said Hamid. “Music has been my greatest passion since I was seven years old and I have been given so many opportunities through my junior and senior years of high school. Nattalie Philips has always told us to utilize every opportunity that we had to avoid regret later, and this advice has carried me throughout my senior year.”
“I look around at all these people that I’ve grown up with, and I know and love, and I realize how close I’ve come to you all, you are my family. I’m going to miss you all so much, and I just want to thank you for everything that you’ve taught me, and all the love that you’ve shown me,” said Sickels. “So while others have thanked parents and teachers and coaches, I want to thank you guys, my classmates.”
Wright gave the graduating class this advice for their future.
“Don’t let other peoples opinions define who you are. Be who you want to be, and answer only to God and yourself, don’t let your past failures determine your future, cut your losses and continue to move forward,” said Wright.
The following is a list of seniors that graduated from Gallia Academy High School on May 18, 2018.
Robert Tanner Allen, William Dean Barcus, Lyndsey Michelle Margaret Bates, Dakotah Christopher Beaver, Taylor Blain Bevan, Ryan Jennings Bias, Brianne Renee Birchfield, Ezra Jakob Blain, Emma Marie Blankenship, Zachary Ryan Bokal, Hope Lauren Boorum, Cheyenne C. Bostic, Nancy Sue Bowyer, Malayna Katherine Brace, John Michael Brewer, Jr., Dalton Brown, Grant Evan Brown, Tristan T. Brumfield, Garrett Reece Burns, Holly Nicole Casey, Lauren Elizabeth Casey, Cara Cavender, Bryce Anthony Cemini, Cory Andrew Chapman, Tori Noelle Church, Michaela Paige Clary, Corey Adrian Clonch, Kobe Douglas Cochrane, Brea Anna Collins, Victoria Paige Corvin, Oliver Henry Davies, Hailey Rene Deem, Nicholas Kent Denbow, Tristan Matthew Eggers, Brock Reed Eutsler, Elizabeth Abigail Evans, Noah R. Ferrell, Katilinn Ann Fraley, Samuel Kenneth French III, Ahnika Nolan Frogale, Zachary Ryan-Chase Fulks, William Lee Gaul, Trey Lee Gillenwater, Caleb Wyatt Greenlee, Kyler Ezra Greenlee, Taae Davan Hamid, Gage Andrew Harrison, Colt W. Hively, Richard L. Houck, Brett Hough, Nickolas Richard Hufford, Tyler Gavyn James Humphrey, Jackie Thomas Hunt, Jr., Savannah Nicole Hurt, Jennifer Nicole James, Braden David Jamora, Jolie Paige Jarrett, Ryley L. Jones, Abby Kristine Jordan, Devan James Kinnison, Sheldon Rashad Lawson, Colin James Little, Mason Lee Long, Rhiannon Patricia Lynch, Grace Margaret Martin, Ethan P. Mays, Terri Ann Mayse, Jonas Pierce McCreedy, Jonathan Gabriel McGuire, Bryan Jax McQuaid, Nathan Landis McQuaid, Nathan Daniel Mitchell, Randall James Mollohan, Joseph McKenzie Moody, Matthew Bradley Moreaux, Andrew Mullins, Katlin Rose Muncy, Torie Dale Newbury, Khaliyah Imani Peaks, Justin Allen Peck, Clayton Plymale, Alexis O’Shawn Polley, Brendan Thomas Pompender, Bethany Hope Purdum, Shelbea Jordan Purser, Obsidian Reeves, Benjamin Michael Riddle, Ethan Robert Rider, Cody Edward Rodgers, Dalton Bryce Rose, Lauren Ellie Rose, Wendall Lee Rossiter III, Breann Alena Runyon, Adrianna Lynn Sanders, Brianna Renee Sanders, Madison Sanders, Makena Hope Saunders, Bailey Delmara Madison Shockey, Adam Daniel Sickels, Abby Danielle Marqui Siders, Macey Leighanne Siders, Braden Jay Simms, Zoe Cheyanne Sims, Dylan Scott Smith, Nacoma Leigh Smith, Cassidy Lynn Starnes, John Wilson Stout, Mandy Lynn Swords, Chance Reign Talbert, Alexis Star Taylor, Dylan Matthew Taylor, Lyndsey Rashell Taylor, Hunter Lee Terry, Kaden Monroe Thomas, Bryan Scott Vance II, Emily J. Walker, Bailey Nicole Watson, Hannah Taylor Watson, Morgan Renee Watson, Catherine Mary Ellen White, John R. White, Joseph Pierce Wilcoxon, Jeremy Wade Williams, Michaela Dawn Williams, Dylan Matthew Williamson, Aiden Matthew Willis, Evan Isaac Wiseman, Alexis Renee Wolf, William Blake Woods, Danielle Nicole Wright, Nathan Wright, Julianna Leigh Yates, Allie Nicole Young, and Xindi Zheng.
Reach Morgan McKinniss at 740-446-2342 ext 2108.