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Vista Ridge Family Applauds Resiliency of Class of ‘21

Cloudy skies and cooler weather did not dampen the pride and excitement of the VRHS community as graduates were presented their diplomas May 30. A total of 345 graduates were honored as family and friends filled UCHealth Park, home of the Rocky Mountain Vibes Baseball Club, to cheer for their accomplishment.

VR Family honors graduates at outdoor ceremony May 30.

“As we all try to get back to doing things the way we used to do them, I want to challenge you to think and take something you learned in the last 15 months, and try to apply that to something in a different situation,” said Dr. Mike Pickering, POWER zone leader.

“Look at what you have accomplished through some of the most difficult times in history … when the going got tough, Vista Ridge High School got tougher,” he added. “Every single one of you have demonstrated empathy, compassion and resiliency … all traits I sure hope you take into your next path.”

Principal Bruce Grose shared a list of achievements of the VR Class of ’21 that included:

  • 71 seniors earned more than 2,800 college credits over four years
  • Seniors completed 334 AP courses and 473 honors courses
  • 61 seniors maintained a GPA of 3.75 or higher all four years in high school
  • Best in D49 Art Show: 6 of 16 awards
  • 19 seniors in AFJROTC earned the Distinguished Award
  • 1 senior female wrestler placed at State
  • Co-ed cheer earned fifth straight Pikes Peak Championship and State Runner-Up

VR graduates celebrate each other on their special day May 30.

Valedictorian Garrett Hake addressed his classmates with words of inspiration, “I have a piece of wisdom for you all … find a passion in life and follow it,” he said. “Find something that you want to do that brings you happiness and joy, and pursue it. As we wrap up this chapter in life, get ready to write this next one exactly as you want it.”

Accolades for the graduates continued when Theresa James, VRHS staff member, shared praise for their determination. “Life has given you many challenges over the last 14 months. I am amazed by the resilience many of you have shown and your ability to adapt,” she remarked. “Some of the best times of my life came from the biggest challenges in life. If I would have taken flight, I would have missed out on what came after the challenge, and I would not have grown to be a better person.”

The pomp and circumstance of the event concluded with Karah Harris, salutatorian, leading the class in moving their tassels from the right to the left signifying their move from students to graduates, and on to life’s next adventure.

To see the full album of photos on Facebook, click on the image below.

VR graduation photo album

Amy Matisek