Congratulations class of 2003

Last Friday marked the output of another quality group of Snoqualmie Valley School District students into a new chapter in their lives. Each time a group of Valley students graduates, we should all take some pride in knowing that we all played a part in the successful scholastic career of these students. By supporting the technology levy several years ago and maintenance and operation levies over the time these students were in school, we gave the district the tools it needed to provide a quality education.

Despite the current economic woes facing many people today, these students have had the best that a public school education can provide.

With the passing of each class comes the realization that some great kids are moving on to other endeavors. I have had the privilege of covering many students throughout their school careers. I have been covering the kids that graduated last week for more than seven years now. It's a great feeling to see them get that diploma.

But it is also a sad day. There are many great kids graduating but a few really stand out in my mind. At the top of the list is Tyler Austin, football player, track athlete, wrestler and all-around great kid. But there are many others who personally impressed me including Rachel McNaul, Vanessa Riley, Brian Lewis, Nick Martindale, Eddie Becker, Brandon Dollinter, John Karlen, Logan Ratcliffe, Emerson Wetherall, Nicci Landdeck, Jessica Hanna, Angela Jones and Marian Lloyd.

My list is based on my memory, so please forgive me if I didn't mention you. My memory isn't as good as it used to be.

But I also have to mention one specific Lower Valley graduate, Aaron Pedeferri. Aaron is taking with him a wrestling dynasty for Cedarcrest. I believe the Pedeferri brothers, Eric and Aaron, along with their teammates, have done more to instill school pride in Cedarcrest than any prior graduates.

As you all head out into the world though, I'll offer a bit of advice. Take the advice or leave it, or tuck it away for future reference. Get involved in your community, take time with your families, when you get to that point, and remember, money isn't everything.

On the more practical side, please bolster social security, keep federal taxes down and remember, planned growth is a good thing. OK, those last few might have been a bit selfish.

Good luck class of 2003.

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