Fort Osage graduates look ahead

The Examiner

Fort Osage High School 

67th commencement 

Friday, Children’s Mercy Park, Kansas City, Kansas 

Graduates before Friday evening's commencement ceremony at Children's Mercy Park.

Class size: 325 graduates 

Valedictorian: Aubrey Tucker 

Salutatorian: Gabriel Kribbs 

Post-secondary: $70,325 in one-time local scholarships 

Class speakers:  

Aubrianna Stewart: Stewart recalled her introduction to school as a kindergarten student, when things seemed unfamiliar. 

“Unlike kindergartner me, I now know that stepping outside your comfort zone is important,” Stewart said. “Sometimes it’s the only thing that can push you to success.”  

Stewart quoted author Shannon Alder in that, “Life begins once you step outside your comfort zone,” and high school provides the years for that – in their case more than could have been imagined because of the pandemic. 

“We have been forced multiple steps outside our comfort zone in the last year and a half,” Stewart said. “The amount of learning experience this class has received is more than anybody, and I believe that should be recognized. 

“Continue to fight to live outside your comfort zone.” 

Aspen Treadwell: Treadwell compared high school years to Adam Sandler’s character in the movie “Click,” who had a remote control to pause and rewind in his life, until he started to lose control of both the remote and his life. Like that character, she said, “We don’t tend to think about the moment until it’s too late.” 

“I don’t think we understood how much we lost (from the pandemic), because we had a whole other year to make up for it,” Treadwell said. “My life kept moving forward, and I wanted to pause it, but couldn’t. The memories we were holding back for just couldn’t happen the way we wanted them to.” 

Treadwell encouraged her classmates soak in the people and moment of their ceremony. 

“Appreciate the days you do have, because just like these last four years they’ll fly by,” she said. “Be here and live.”