2017 graduating Trojans march toward the future

2017 graduates of Marais des Cygnes Valley High School. Photo by Jerry Kramer, Kramer Photos.

“Remember that you owe it to those here today to be the best at that which you choose to do,” Leon Sluder, 2017 Marais des Cygnes Valley High School valedictorian, reminded his fellow graduates during the school’s commencement Sunday at Melvern.

Sluder told 11 other MdCVHS graduates that he and they were a product of the crowd gathered May 7 at the school gymnasium – including “parents, teachers, mentors, coaches, and community members who have worked together to get us here. They have all invested in a future that we will ultimately choose for ourselves.”

2017 Marais des Cygnes Valley High School valedictorian Leon Sluder.

2017 Marais des Cygnes Valley High School valedictorian Leon Sluder.

Following the introduction of 2017 MdCV salutatorian Peyton Johnson and valedictorian Sluder, school counselor Laurel Ladewig introduced the MdCV graduating class of 2017: Whitney Marie Arb, Sanya Marie Day, Kayden August Dickey, Addison David Hall, Samantha Lynn Harris, Dakota Austin Jackson, Peyton Alan Johnson, Hatch Erin Lott, Kelsey Jean Lowe, Valoree Coleen Lynn, Leon Paul Sluder, and Allison Nicole Smith.

Greg McCurdy, USD 456 Board of Education president, and Jamie Sowers, vice president, presented diplomas to the graduates. MdCV High School principal is Michelle Schulze; USD 456 superintendent is Ted Hessong.

As is tradition at MdCVHS, the graduates formed a receiving line following the ceremony to greet all who gathered to send off the Trojans as they march toward future endeavors.

Awards and honors given to the 2017 graduates included:

  • Citizenship Award – Allison Smith, Kayden Dickey
  • Dale Dennis Excellence in Education Award – Leon Sluder
  • Governor’s Scholar – Leon Sluder
  • Community Service Award – Leon Sluder
  • Carol and Jessie Thurston Memorial – Samantha Harris
  • Barb Kellum Memorial Scholarship – Allison Smith
  • MdCV Booster Club – Leon Sluder
  • Woodward, Belt, Heilmann, Arb, American Legion and Auxiliary Scholarship – Leon Sluder
  • MdCV FFA Scholarship – Kayden Dickey, Leon Sluder
  • Don Lichtenauer Family Scholarship – Kayden Dickey, Leon Sluder
  • Melvern Marais des Cygnes Alumni Association – Leon Sluder
  • Lala Beth Weis Memorial – Leon Sluder
  • Philip Spencer Memorial Scholarship, Osage County Fire District No. 3 – Samantha Harris
  • Quenemo Pride – Leon Sluder
  • Garard Family Scholarship – Peyton Johnson
  • Lawrence Lester McNabb Technical Scholarship – Samantha Harris
  • Lawrence Lester McNabb Scholarship – Leon Sluder

USD 456 school board president Greg McCurdy presents a diploma to MdCV High School salutatorian Peyton Johnson.

Photos by Jerry Kramer, Kramer Photos.

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