By Todd R. Hansen
Samara Jefferson has a story, but it was not hers she wanted to tell Friday at the 2018 Vanden High commencement ceremony on the school’s football field.
Instead, the class president – the past two years – told the stories of Tikamporn Wutthakul, who arrived in the U.S. from Thailand four years ago, and William Cornejo, an El Salvador native, and Christopher Stratton, who has cerebral palsy, and Keion Wade, who fell behind in his studies after his father, Keith, died his sophomore year. But Wade worked to get back from an alternative high school to graduate with his class.
None, statistically speaking, had better than a 60 percent chance of graduating on time, Jefferson said. But each was part of the 390-student class to receive their diplomas so they can continue their stories.