Prayer and tears during CBHS graduation ceremony

  • Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Scott Harper/south strand news A group of Carvers Bay High seniors excited to be getting their diplomas.


A severe thunderstorm raging outside could not dampen the excitement as the 87 Carvers Bay High School seniors of the Class of 2014 received their diplomas June 5.

The ceremony in the school’s gymnasium was delayed by about 10 minutes after the storm caused a momentary power outage. It took several minutes for the lights in the gym to warm back up.

After the ceremony got underway, the welcome was given by salutatorian Spencer Owens who talked about his love for his fellow students during his speech.

“You are all special in your own unique way,” he said. “I love you all.”

Owens, who is a member of a southern gospel singing group, peppered his speech with scripture, Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8: 28.

After his prepared remarks, he did something he told the crowd was not rehearsed.

“I do love you guys. You are my family,” he said. He then spent his final minute of his time at the podium praying for his classmates, their families and the staff of Carvers Bay.

The prayer drew a round of applause, a standing ovation and cheers that drowned out the rolling thunder from the storm outside.

After the ceremony, Owens said he had given Principal Richard Neal notice that he may possibly include a prayer in his speech.

Valedictorian Laja Wright was overcome with emotion as she took to the microphone for her speech.

One reason was because she dedicated her speech not only to her parents, but to her grandfather, Ervin Wright, who passed away in January.

The Carvers Bay top student said he is her inspiration for wanting to go into the medical field.

During her speech, Wright quoted from Maya Angelou.

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel,” Wright quoted Angelou.

She capsulated her days in elementary, middle and high school and then said she is “proud to be a part of the class of 2014.”

She also urged her classmates to follow their dreams.

“Our passions and dreams make us all unique individuals,” she said. “We must never forget where we come from or the people who have supported us.”

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