Carson High seniors graduate |

Carson High seniors graduate

by Teri Vance, Appeal Staff Writer
Carson graduate Jack Brooks, 18, tips an Elmo beach ball across the aisle during graduation ceremonies at the school's football field.

Members of Carson High School’s graduating class of 2003 took senior class president Josh Brekken literally when he shouted into the microphone, ” We never have to go to high school again, so take this graduation to the max.”

Despite warnings from officials before the ceremony began, graduates tossed colorful beach balls into the air, along with an inflatable cow.

Silly string also shot out among the graduates.

“Make sure you don’t get any of that in your eyes,” Principal Glen Adair jokingly cautioned from the podium.

It was a day of celebration for the 457 graduates, each with their own set of obstacles that had been overcome leading to Saturday morning’s ceremony.

For Oswaldo Mariscal, 18, it was the language and adjusting to a new culture with new regulations in four years.

“I had to finish the proficiency test and that was really hard because English is my second language,” he explained. “I took it like three time, but I did it. I was so happy.”

He plans to join the U.S. Air Force after graduation.

Andrew Moltz, 18, marched through the ceremony with mixed emotions.

“In some ways it sucks because I won’t be seeing my best friends anymore,” he said. “But in other ways, it’s good because I get career opportunities and college.”

It was difficult for Denise Rikalo, 18, to see a negative side.

“We’re stoked,” she said with a smile. “We’re done with high school and we’re moving on.”

She plans to attend Biola University in California to major in nursing.

Steve Tindle, 19, designed the diplomas for this year’s graduating class.

“I feel great,” he said. “One: I’m graduating. Two: my art is being spread out to 400 plus people.”

Valedictorian Andrew Pederson, 18, was also pleased to be graduating.

“It’s better than a kick in the pants,” he reasoned. “It’s a nice resolution to four good years.”

Pederson shared the spot of valedictorian with Anna Asp, 18, and Jessica Smallman, 18, was recognized as class salutatorian.