GMG celebrates Commencement 2022

Eight members of the GMG Class of 2022 were named to the prestigious group of "Top 20%.” Pictured (l-r): Owen Bovenmyer, Lena Hood, Abe Dieleman, Hannah Vaverka, Kennadi Sederburg, Chloe Wickam, and LeNaeya Carter. Not pictured is Ryland Rodriguez. –Photo by Dan Lastovka

GMG Commencement was held at Garwin on May 15. Thirty-nine students were on the class roll. The class motto was: “Today is the tomorrow we dreamed about yesterday.”

Salutatorian Abe Dieleman presented the Welcome to the large crowd. The Senior Video was shown. Put together by the Senior Class, led by Lena Hood, the video featured photos of the happenings during the last 13 years as the class grew up, each senior’s photo, and what their future plans include.

“There You’ll Be” and “The Climb” were the songs sung by the GMG Choir. Mrs. Sheryl Mullikan directed the singers.

Principal Jaime Gargas addressed the graduates and noted that the Class of 2022 had endured a lot of challenges on their journey to graduation. The group endured the Derecho, the Covid pandemic, and the “Flood of 2022” (This occurred when major water pipes broke and forced the closing of the entire east portion of the Garwin building.) So it was fitting that just prior to beginning the Commencement ceremony the order was issued to “Evacuate the building immediately!” A gas line had been damaged to the east of the high school building and everyone was moved outside to the west of the school. After about 15 minutes of apprehensive waiting and standing in a rain shower, the “All Clear” was issued and the activities of the day resumed.

Valedictorian Chloe Wickam was Class Speaker. She reflected on the class and how quickly they went from being the young ones to being a graduating senior.

Future Farmers of America (FFA) is a very active group. Ten members of the GMG Class of 2022 were also FFA members including (l-r): Lilly Harris, Madison Lewis, Lena Hood, Caiden Wobeter, Abe Dieleman, Desirae Baldazo, LeNaeya Carter, Rachel Slifer, Jenna Yilek, and Colby Miller. –Photo by Dan Lastovka

Principal Gargas presented the awards and honors. The GMG Foundation contributed just under $80,000 in scholarships. The GMG Class of 2022 also was granted about $120,000 in external monies.

Presentation of Diplomas was done with a new twist. The students were allowed to choose the person to hand them their diplomas. The students could choose from faculty and school board members.

The GMG Band played the Processional and Recessional. Director is Mr. Charles Beeler. A special “Thank you” to Mr. Dan Lastovka for assisting with the pictures.

GMG National Honor Society members honored during graduation on May 15 include (l-r): Owen Bovenmyer, Lena Hood, Abe Dieleman, Chloe Wickam, Kennadi Sederburg, Sydni Gale, LeNaeya Carter, Colby Miller, Gavin Purvis, and Jenna Yilek. –Photo by Dan Lastovka

Chosen as Junior Class Ushers for GMG 2022 Commencement ceremonies were Jenna Humphrey, Marriah Stonewall, Noah Teske, and Wyatt Jackson. –Photo by Dan Lastovka