HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — Former Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin may have drawn more attention than usual to New Hope High School’s Commencement Wednesday night, but as one woman in attendance said, she would not have been able to come see Palin, it if were not for those 77 seniors.
Approximately 6,000 people watched the New Hope Class of 2014 graduate.
Senior class president Leah Tabor told the crowd that the extra audience members just meant that she had the opportunity to let six times the people know how great New Hope is.
New Hope is a town of roughly 2,800 and its small town nature is what many of its residents say make it special.
“We’ve got a small town school and that’s what I love about it,” said New Hope senior Camden Brewer. “Everybody knows each other.”
The seniors will soon move on from their familiar town, the town that helped shape their dreams for the future.
“It’s just really cool to be able to share so many memories with your class and get to share a final one with them,” said New Hope senior Leah Glover.
New Hope’s guest speaker, Sarah Palin, also shared a similar childhood to the seniors.
She told the grads that she was the only thing standing between them and their tickets to a brighter future, their diplomas.
“No need to remember the speaker tonight,” said Palin. “I want you to remember just a bit of what I’ll share though. Congratulations to you all. Go forth and conquer but do not be afraid to fail.”
With diplomas in their hands and a message of hope in their hearts, the 77 New Hope seniors enter the real world armed with the power of small town dreamers.
“I mean it’s one of the last times we’ll all be together and it’s definitely sad,” said New Hope senior Casey Rickles, “but at the same time I know we’re all going to do great things.”