Sonora High School senior Jose Garcia perhaps summed up every graduate’s feelings Thursday night when he raised his fists in the air and hollered as his name was read.
He was one of 201 students who graduated, a ceremony that attracted so many people the concrete stands at Dunlavy Field were filled 30 minutes before it started.
Promptly at 7 p.m., the graduates filed in as the Golden Regiment Band directed by Yvonne Denton played “Pomp and Circumstance.” Senior Phoenix Farris sang the “Star Spangled Banner.” then Levi Houghton, a student body representative, delivered the welcome address.
Jackson Bouchard, Morgan St. Pierre and Valeria Galvez reflected on their years at Sonora High School. and Jake Evens, Lillian Fox and Marshall Costello performed “Rivers and Roads.” Weston Goularte, the salutatorian, spoke about dreams coming true.
Valedictorian Thomas Johnson delivered a speech he called “Stupid Questions.” He implored his classmates to ask questions — even ones they fear are stupid — because there are no stupid questions, only a search for answers and learning.
Several seniors joined the Golden Regiment Band to play “Hush” for their last performance with the band.
Kaarina Thompson, a Middle College student, read the names of the 30 other Middle College students, while California Scholarship Federation President Daniela Rosa read the names of the six other CSF recipients.
After the seniors received their diplomas, the band played the alma mater, seniors tossed their mortarboards into the air, and family and friends rushed the field to congratulate them.