Photos by Kenneth Armstrong
The parents of East Bladen High School Class of 2021 organized a parade and Baccalaureate Service. The celebrations were held on Sunday, May 22, 2021, in Elizabethtown.
East Bladen High School Principal Dr. Jason Wray and Assistant Principal Mrs. Heather Thompson lead the procession down Broad Street on Sunday at 5 p.m. with an escort by Elizabethtown Police Department. Seniors decorated their vehicles with signs and balloons and gave big smiles and waves to those in attendance. Large crowds lined the downtown street as they cheered and congratulated the Class of 2021.
Following the parade, the Class of 2021 and their family and friends gathered at the East Bladen High School Lennon Fisher Stadium for a Baccalaureate Service at 6 p.m.
As the high school seniors walked in, the song “Rise Up” by Andra Day played in the background. Valedictorian Nick Norris welcomed the graduates. Class of 2021 Graduate Cheyanne Jacobs opened the service with prayer.
2021 East Bladen Graduate Katie Evans read Isaiah 40:31, “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint.”
Evans also read Acts 17:28, “‘For in Him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.'”
Salutatorian Jackson Bostic then provided special music singing, “The Words I Would Say.”
East Bladen 2021 Graduate Lily Lin introduced speakers Dr. Q. Jimmel Williamson, Pastor of Pleasant Union Missionary Baptist Church, and Rev. Jonathan Hayes, M.Div., Senior Pastor of Wesley’s Chapel Church.
Dr. Williamson encouraged the graduates to soar like eagles by trusting in the Lord. Rev. Hayes gave the students ten points to follow with the Lord as they transition into their new roles in life.
East Bladen Class of 2021 Graduate Chelsea Herring did not falter in her performance during the service. Although the music ceased to play, Herring continued to sing a capella, “Who Else But God.”
Before the service ended, Salutatorian Bostic gave a charge to his classmates. He encouraged them to continue to be successful even in the face of adversities.
Dr. Williamson gave the Benediction, and the song “Ready” played during the recessional for the Class of 2021.