Over the past 100 years, Frontenac High School has produced many graduates who have gone on to do great things, whether in their own schools and community or other places.
During the 100th annual FHS commencement exercises, graduates were challenged to go and do great things, but to remember "Once a Raider, Always a Raider."
The class and audience members heard from Noah Monsour and Allie Moody, who each gave commencement addresses.
Monsour started his speech off with a selfie and then entertained the crowd with a spoken word-style rundown of the past four years and the future ahead.
He outlined memories of the class’ freshman and sophomore years, including "Even though tragedy and loss tried to bring the team despair, our young men retaliated holding state champion rings in the air."
"Our junior year kept the train rolling, as it only took us, like, 20 years to beat Colgan," Monsour continued, reminding others of low moments, such as the adoption of the phrase "YOLO" for you only live once.
"A huge highlight would be our girls basketball team owned it as they battled and climbed all the way to the state championship," he continued.
"As we said our final team prayer there’s one thing I can remember, was praising God for the journey that was truly a splendor," Monsour said.
"Take what you have done and grow," Monsour advised his classmates, concluding, "high school was a journey. It was never a destination,"
Allie Moody then dispensed advice, much of it wisdom gathered throughout childhood from Dr. Seuss.
"From kindergarten to senior year, which feels like it passed in the blink of an eye, we have evolved into human beings that may be, maybe, be able to function on their own in the real world," Moody said.
She talked about the Class of 2014 as a group of ambitious, caring, loving people who will be successful in whatever they do.
"Today you are you, that is truer than true, there is no one alive that is youer than you," she said, continuing on with a challenge for each classmate to expand on themselves.
She continued with challenges to learn, grow and behave as though it was the day they would be remembered.
Honor graduates then were recognized, as well as Kansas State High School Activities Association citizenship awards, which were given to Kamry Brynds and Noah Monsour.
In honor of the 100th anniversary of FHS, principal Ted Hessong also recognized district employees who are FHS grads, as well as alumni in the room.
"It was great for the students to see those who chose to come back and teach or work at the school they graduated from," Hessong said.
Chase Turner concluded the ceremony, reminding the students of the sophomore baseball season where, "a team rallied around tragedy to make history."
He gave a shoutout to all the people in the gymnasium who can feel some ownership in the graduation and named off many ways in which those present have influenced graduates.
"You have all filled one or more of these roles in our lives. Without your sacrifice, commitment, patience and support we would not be here today," he said.
He advised celebrating the day and the way that Raiders overcome and work hard regardless of the situation, and challenged his classmates to begin a new book in their lives as they are, "poised and ready to go into the future."
Many of Saturday’s Raider graduates will go on to be Gorillas, including Brynds and Ethan Powell.
"I wanted to stay close to my family," Brynds said, adding that she is still excited for the adventure ahead.
"There are definitely things I’m going to miss a lot, but I’m really excited to see what the future holds for me," she said.
Powell will be a member of the Pittsburg State University Honors College and study biology with a pre-optometry focus, and his future plans include attending the University of Missouri - St. Louis to study optometry.
"I have a plan and this is kind of the first big step in making sure everything falls into place," he said of graduation.
He said he looks forward to staying close to his classmates and getting to know new people.
"I’m looking forward to gaining new friends, but keeping in touch with these friends throughout the years," he said.