Montrose grads finish puzzle

Montrose Area grads rise to their feet Saturday morning to acknowledge one of their own, Isaac Bulkley, seated center, whose miraculous recovery from an accident with a prostheic left hand and left leg, served as a source of inspiration for the senior class. STAFF PHOTO/ROBERT BAKER


Six years ago, Montrose Area High School Principal Jim Tallarico asked elementary school principals Chris McComb and Greg Adams about that year’s sixth grade.

Their forlorn response, Tallarico said, was simply “Good luck.”

But at Saturday’s graduation ceremony in the school’s auditorium, school officials and seniors celebrated just how far the class of 2012 had come.

“Six years ago, people said we were the worst


class,” Montrose senior class president Johanna Hripto said. “We’re here to tell them they were wrong.”

She then proceeded to share how the girls basketball team had gone to the state’s final four, the baseball team went undefeated in the regular season, the Scholastic Bowl got three wins and netted the school $9,000, and the band played inHawaiiin December during the 70th anniversary of the attack onPearl Harbor.

“You set no limits and you dared to do the impossible,” Johanna said.

Salutatorian Katherine Kielceski acknowledged the class had its share of ups and downs, but pronounced it “ready to take on the world.”


“The principal told us six years ago we were a puzzle, but we could be something when all the pieces come together,” she said. “He was right, but it’s now up to us to go out and do even better.”

Valedictorian Christopher Jordan noted that classmate Jacob Myers made all-state chorus three years in a row, and Kielceski became a Morgan Horse saddleseat world champion her senior year.

He also recognized the greatest inspiration of all – classmate Isaac Bulkley, a former football player who survived a tragic motorcycle accident and now has a prosthetic left arm and left leg.

Tallarico also spoke of Bulkley in his speech to graduates, and the class rose to its feet in thunderous applause echoed by the crowd.

“Here is one who never gave up,” Tallarico said, acknowledging others who also walked in the light to overcome adversity. “What made you special is you looked for the solution and not the problem.”

In presenting the class of 2012, Tallarico also asked the crowd in attendance to stand for a moment of silence to remember Nick Bryant, who died a couple of years ago, but would have also been in its class.

Myers, who opened the program by singing the National Anthem, sang another solo, James Taylor’s ‘You’ve Got a Friend’ before Tallarico presented the class.

Myers said he wanted to dedicate the song to all the friends on stage with him who were the reason he got out of bed each day, but then he added that his mother also had a role in that, as well.

Folowing the presentation of diplomas by members of the school board, Michael Roman offered some reflections from the Class of 2012.

That was followed by Allison Jones leading the group in singing one last time as a body the school’s alma mater.

In his address, Jordan drew from Rudyard Kipling and noted, “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs… if you can trust when all men doubt you… you’ll be a man my son.”

“That fits this class so well,” he said.

Montrose Area High School Graduates are: Cory Joseph Adams, Leah Marie Aldrich, Dylan Joseph Amplo, Brooke
Lianne Andersen, Jesus Alonzo Avila Sanchez, Sandra Avila Francisco, Pia Barrett, Tyler John Beagle, Brooke Ann Bennett, Nicholas Kenton Best, Fayth Suesanna Betke, Kimber Leigh Blaisure, Jacey Alexandra Blom, Justin James Boldt, Charles Johnathan Brand, Gracee Rose
Bulger-Oakley, Isaac M. Bulkley, Michele Laura Burke, Ayla Ruth
Carley, Alexander Scott Charles, Jordan Mark Christofaro, Bryanne
Elizabeth Clark, Nathan Lee Clark, Codey David Cobb, Victoria Elizabeth Collins, Cierra Dawn Cook, Amanda Jeanne Cornwell, Matthew Christopher Coy, Spencer William Craige, Taylor Michelle Cudo, Kenneth
Lee Curtis, Elizabeth Jean Cushner, Thomas Charles Davenport, Jennifer Ellen Davis, Bryan Allen DeGraw, Jeremy Scott Dibble, Sidney Veronica
Earley, Dallas Georgine Ely, Sara Nicole Fair, Dorian Malik Ford,
Michael Patrick Gardner, Zachary Dean Geisler-Zenefski, Joseph
Pasquale Genito, Emmie Lu Gibson, Michelle M. Glassmeyer, Kate Elizabeth Gnall, Kyle David Graver, Emma Elizabeth Gregory, Megan Alicia Gregory, Kiera Ann Grochal, Aaron Joseph Grochowski, Katie Mae Groover, Nathan M. Haberle, Michael Hart Hackett, Joshua Taylor Hale,
Anneliese Catherine Hamernick, John J. Harding, Brittany Susan
Hartman, Samuel Troy Henry, Quiersti M. Louise Hooko, Sarah Elizabeth Howell, Johanna Lee Hripto, Dakota Lynn Jerauld, Brett Matthew Johnson, Melinda Rae Johnson, Rebecca Jean Johnson, Allison Jones, Stephen Timothy Jones, Christopher Brown Jordan, Allison Elizabeth
Kiefer, Katherine Mary Kielceski, Kurt Garrett Kimsey, Emily Ann
Kinney, Andrew David Klein, Sara Elizabeth Krupinski, Jamie Allen Lapuszynski, Clara Carlin Lattimore, Mason A. Legg, Thomas Emory Lewis, Zachary Everitt Loomis, Ashley Lee Luce, Colby Wescott Major, Brooke Morgan Malloy, William Mitchell McKeen, Timothy Richard
McNamara, Ashley Anne Mershon, Leo Douglas Mock, Caitlin R. Morgan, Katlyn Marie Morrison, Dezyrea Dawn Mower, D’Jay Mark Mower, Jacob
David Myers, Rina Nikol Nikolaidis, Nicole Elizabeth Norton, David Kirk Oakley, Bradley Steven O’Brien, Katharine E. Olszewski, Casey
Mark O’Reilly, Juan Antonio Ortiz, Sara Ann Pabst, Alejandra Palomino, Megan Faye Phillips, Michael Dominic Rapisardi, Madeline Alise Richmond, Rachel Marie Robinson, Alexander Thomas Rodino, Michael Brandon Roman, Samantha Rose Roszel, Lanci Hazel Salsman, Jason P. Savage, Thomas Joesph Walter Schremm, Austin James Shaffer, Brittany
Lynn Shields, Rachael Renee Sisson, Jordan Mark Smith, Matthew Douglas Sobiech, Allegra Kay Spero, Christopher Dillon Spoehr, Shannen Noelle
Squires, Halee Marie Steen, Liana Lynn Stinson, Kathryn Elizabeth
Stranburg, Timothy Charles Strayer, Amanda Mae Tanzini, Emily Melissa Teed, Korey Alex Travis, Tanna Marie Ulmer, Michael James Vaccaro, Blake Edward VanNostrand, Frankie Jolise VanNostrand, Terry Ruth
Visakay, Katelin Mae Volk, Maura Elaine Warner, Roger T. Weidow, Anthony Michael Whitney, Ellamae Ann Wilbur, Michaela Cheyenne Williams-Clark, Timothy Eugene Wilson, Dustin James Wolf, Andrew David Wood, Taylor Suzanne Wright, Benjamin Joseph Zalewski, George Raymond
Zamorski, and Jonathan Richard Zielewicz.