It took a little longer to get there than they may have hoped, but for the class of 2011, Honesdale High School is now just a memory.


It took a little longer to get there than they may have hoped, but for the class of 2011, Honesdale High School is now just a memory.

It was standing room only in the steamy middle school gymnasium with more than 1000 people who turned out to witness the commencement of this year’s crop of seniors.

Programs fluttered in the crowd as people fanned themselves during the various addresses, musical interludes and Principal Gregory Frigoletto’s list of well over a hundred awards and honors earned by graduates.

Outgoing Superintendent Thomas Jenkins gave this year’s keynote address the day after  his retirement took effect.

Speaking on behalf of the staff and faculty, he said the class of 235 seniors was a proud example of the success of the public education system, and challenged graduates to strive to serve their communities as they close one chapter of their lives and open another.
Four speeches by graduating students offered peers the speakers’ thoughts on what to remember as they move on in life after high school.

Class president Teofilo Newsuan welcomed the sweltering crowd, laid the ground rules for the ceremony and addressed what he termed “The Challenge Called Life” for his fellow graduates.

Newsuan was followed by Jana Fritz, who regaled her classmates not to forget what Honesdale High School, the town itself and Wayne County in general have given them.

After a stirring instrumental rendition of “Lord of the Dance,” Graduate Benita Pursch offered her fellows some very pragmatic advice to remember in their travels — Make a checklist, stick to it to help attain your goals and check finished items off to remind you of your accomplishments — like graduating high school.

After another musical interlude, this time a choral selection of “It Takes A Village;” that earned an enthusiastic response from the crowd, class Vice-President Sara Musetti challenged the rest of her graduating class to face life’s challenges with their heads held high. Life, she said, is what one makes of it, and a positive attitude can make all the difference.

For those just beginning their lives as young adults, Musetti’s advice could help them live wisely as they turn to the next chapter of life.