63 walk in ‘historic’ Leak Street graduation

Leak Street to undergo name change for 2015-16 school year 

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

* Photo gallery – more than 1,000 images
* 2014 graduation coverage

ROCKINGHAM — Yo, G. What up?

William Kelley made sure to qualify the sentiment to each of the 63 young men and women seated inside the Kate Finley Auditorium Thursday evening at Rockingham Middle School.

“I can officially call you a ‘G’,” said Kelley, Leak Street High School’s assistant principal. “You’re a graduate.”

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Thomas Bloomfield, center, is welcomed by Leak Street Assistant Principal William Kelley and Principal Susan Brigman.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Thomas Bloomfield, center, is welcomed by Leak Street Assistant Principal William Kelley and Principal Susan Brigman.

It wasn’t easy, school officials noted, but the journey towards high school graduation was worth the sacrifice and pain — the unknowing of where the next night’s sleep would take place or from where the next meal would come.

“Some of you stumbled,” said Principal Susan Brigman. “Some of you fell really hard … feeling like no one cared if you lived or died.”

But each student, Brigman confirmed, stood back up. Each student faced adversity and kicked it aside or ran right through it. Brigman said that shows perseverance and determination, key traits that will help the members of the Class of 2015 succeed in “the race of life.”

Each student will have a different finish line, Brigman said, but it’s important to “never lose the determination to live life fully.”

Those students started the next chapter of their lives as the last graduating class at Leak Street High School. Board member Jerry Ethridge said that in April, the Richmond County Board of Education voted to rename Leak Street High School to Ashley Chapel Educational Center.

Kelley encouraged students to consider making “a delicious” decision each time life sets an obstacle in front of them.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Assistant Principal William Kelley, left, and Principal Susan Brigman stand with Valedictorian Anita Kelly (second from left) and Asia Baldwin, salutatorian.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Assistant Principal William Kelley, left, and Principal Susan Brigman stand with Valedictorian Anita Kelly (second from left) and Asia Baldwin, salutatorian.

“Life is supposed to be sweet,” Kelley said. “You can imagine what happens when you make bitter decisions.”

Valedictorian Anita Kelly and Salutatorian Asia Baldwin were recognized and offered words of hope and encouragement — and relief.

“We made it,” Kelly said with confidence. “Anything is possible when you put your mind to it.”

Baldwin confirmed Brigman’s message that, no, it wasn’t easy. And it’s not going to get any easier.

“We’ve had our  ups and downs,” Baldwin said.

She encouraged her fellow graduates to live life, and to not be afraid to make decisions — and to make them fast.

“Life is not going to wait,” Baldwin said.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Assistant Principal William Kelley offered words of wisdom and encouragement to 63 members of the Class of 2015 of Leak Street High School.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Assistant Principal William Kelley offered words of wisdom and encouragement to 63 members of the Class of 2015 of Leak Street High School.

A receiving line that included Dr. Cindy Goodman, superintendent of Richmond County Schools, Kelley and Brigman welcomed each graduate to the stage to receive his or  her diploma.

Class of 2015

Asia Briane Ambrose, Asia Lakia Baldwin (Salutatorian), Jarrett Blue Blakely, Thomas Javee’ Bloomfield, Michael Reid Braddock, Isaiah Gilbert Cade, Jazzmin Lorraine Cann, Aishalanah Kishani Clinton, Tommy Lee Covington Jr., Tabitha Nicole Dawkins, Jakiel Lavarus Delmonte Douglas

Travon Lavaghn Maurice Evans, Yasmine Lashyn Keith Fairley, Mark Stephen Forrester II, Jeffrey Jerome Gibson Jr., Donterris Maurice Goins, Tyrrell Rakim Gould, Christhaun David Grant Jr., Christian Marquise Harden, Billy O’Dell Hayes III, Patrick Leon Hayes Jr., James Rasheen Huey

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Tabitha Dawkins is one of 63 members of the Class of 2015 at Leak Street High School.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Tabitha Dawkins is one of 63 members of the Class of 2015 at Leak Street High School.

Lekasia Monique Ingram, Erika Maelene Jacobs, Robert Rashwan Devante Johnson, Sterlin Stephon Jones, Anita Isis Kelly (Valedictorian), Jacob Daniel Kohl, Dornisha Da’la’sha Land, Darius Lemar Ledbetter, Darius Antonio Little, Joshua Malik Little, Jamie Renee Marshburn, Diana Laura Martinez, Taylor Bennett McCormick, Joseph Daniel McCurdy, Keith DeWayne McDonald Jr., Matthew Dylan McDonald, Saquan Essence Zinaya McDonald, Shaiquail Wanya McDonald, Hyneef TiRay McKeithan, Jari Aikeem McRae, Austin Scott Miles, Breanna Star Miller, Tyrone Davis Moore Jr., William Marcis Adam Moore II

Jayl’ a A’ lexus Nelson, Nazjionna Laprincess Nelson, Kavon Dashon Orr, Kimberly Suzanne Parsons, Vincent Tywan Kay Pate, Monesha Alethea Prince, Kahdie Haleel Ratliff, Davon Donta Robinson, John Warren Sturdivant Jr., Lacey Nicole Sweatt, Kaiwaun Montre’ I Swinnie

Miguel Dondray Thomas Jr., Kierra Rachelle Wade, Christopher Ray Kenneth Wall, Briana Star Warwick, Shaqunda Elania Williams and Amber Marie Winfree.

Junior Marshals

Andrea Verde, Alyssa Bass, Kyle Pore’

Filed in: Education, Featured News, Latest Headlines, News, Rockingham

You might like:

GAP program fills a hole for ‘hands-on’ experience GAP program fills a hole for ‘hands-on’ experience
Sit back for an ‘interesting story’ Sit back for an ‘interesting story’
Cash available for crime-solving tips Cash available for crime-solving tips
Rotruck sues Town of Summerfield Rotruck sues Town of Summerfield
© 2018 The Piedmont Post. All rights reserved. XHTML / CSS Valid.