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Canton 2013 Class President: ‘Respect Others, Never Give Up’


CANTON - Hugh C. Williams High School class president’s message to fellow classmates was simple and from the heart - “respect others and never give up” - words he has exemplified throughout his high school years.

“Work hard in life. Set goals, and most importantly respect others. The first two go hand in hand. As we all know, things in life do not come easy. If you give up too soon you will never accomplish anything and by setting goals you will know what you are working towards,” said Jonathan T. Pinckney at Friday night’s commencement ceremony at St. Lawrence University’s Appleton Arena. “Take it from me. Some people didn’t think a 15-year-old could build a pavilion at Taylor Park, but with two years of dedication and a lot of hard work, I was able to prove them wrong.”

Canton Central School’s Class of 2013 featured 93 graduates and numerous award winners.

The class president also expressed words of encouragement, telling the graduating seniors to stride head first into the next chapter of their lives.

“We are about to take the next steps into the real world by joining the military, finding a job, or heading off to college. Our last chapter was outlined for us, but now we must write our own,” he stated. “Don’t let someone else try and write it for you. There are going to be some bumps in the road, some mistakes made and some brick wall to overcome. I once read that brick walls aren’t made to keep us out, they are there to give us a chance to show us how badly we want something.”

Senior speaker and class vice president Allyssa E. Hampson also alluded to the importance of perseverance and due diligence.

“We need to take our education with us because we will not be successful without it. Our education is the foundation to how we will live the rest of our lives, and it is too valuable to waste,” Miss Hampson stated. “Whether it’s going to college, joining the military or going into the work force, our education at Hugh C. Williams High School is a valuable tool in overcoming the challenges ahead. Our time here has been an incredible experience and one that we will never forget.”

Musical selections were performed by Erin Hampson, “From A Distance,” Jay Kepes, Jacob Gallup, Noah Roberts, Zach Barnes, Isaac Ballard, and Rachel Horwitz, “We’re Going to Be Friends” by the White Stripes, and Anna Tulloch and Michael Jent, “Growing Up” by Run River North.

Principal Mark Passamonte read the list a senior of award winners and senior accomplishments. Diplomas were presented by school superintendent William Gregory and Barbara Beekman, school board president .

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