SARATOGA SPRINGS — Only one of the 31 seniors of the 2020 Saratoga Central Catholic School (SCC) graduating class was asked to put on their cap and gown this past weekend.
As the graduates drove through the school to pick up their caps and gowns, graduate Ria Walsh was honored. Her fellow students and teachers beeped their car horns and showed their support through the purple and gold school colors. Faculty and Staff wore their SCC spirit-wear with pom-poms and signs. They also handed out goodie bags, yearbooks, academic and athletic awards and caps and gowns to each senior as they drove up.
“We had them all park their cars in the parking lot while beeping their horns and yelling. Ria was so excited. The students got to support her and she got to see them and have a little celebration as well,” Mary Guarnieri, director of advancement at SCC, said.
Last August, Walsh joined the Army National Guard. Her recruiter, SSG Brandon Moseman joined the celebration and honored Walsh with a personal level of achievement.
The district has planned a tentative graduation ceremony for Friday, July 10. However, Walsh will leave for basic training on June 30, and SCC still wanted to honor her.
Interim Principal Michael Kondratowicz handed the graduate her diploma along with two awards she earned. Walsh received one award from the Gurtler Brother VFW Post 420 Patriotism award and also received the Knights of Colombus 4th Degree Assembly Patriotism award.
Guarnieri said the event was great and the students appreciated it.
“It went very well. We had a dunking booth where students could attempt to dunk our Athletic Director Alphonse Lambert,” Guarnieri said.
A local DJ, Elaine Gaynor of DJ Smalz, played music for the duration of the event. Along with picking up their caps and gowns, students were welcomed to receive their awards for the school year. Guarnieri said for the ceremony this year, two faculty members recorded a video of the awards in their gym.