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Bittersweet Departure for St. Luke's Graduates

NEW CANAAN, Conn. – In the midst of such a happy occasion, the word of the day  among the Class of 2012 at St. Luke’s School was bittersweet.

As happy as the 66-member senior class was to celebrate graduating from the private school, they were also sad knowing that Friday’s commencement ceremony would be the last day the close-knit class would be together to applaud each other’s successes and have a laugh when looking back on humorous failures.

“We’re moving on, but it’s sad we won’t see some of these people again,” said Colin McIntire, 18, of Darien, receiving hugs from his classmates after the two-hour graduation ceremony was over. With his work at St. Luke’s done, McIntire is bound for Bates College in Maine next fall.  

Zoe Smock, 18, of Pound Ridge N.Y., said she’s ready to move on to Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, next fall. Still, she spent much of Friday taking pictures and enjoying some of the last moments she’ll have with her St. Luke’s classmates as a group. “It feels like a blur,” Smock said. “It’s sad because this class is so tight, and we’ve spent so much time together.”

The senior class unity included a performance of Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” and laughing at how each of them has changed since their arrivals at St. Luke’s in a before-and-after slideshow.

Valedictorian Abigail Goettler of New Canaan urged her fellow seniors to treasure the present rather than worry so much about what’s to come, whether it’s college or anything beyond that. “We will never get this moment back and that’s why we have to live it and love every minute,” Goettler said. “I’m loving this moment, I’m glad that I’m in it and I’m thrilled that I’m sharing it all with you.”

Arthur Roski II, 18, of New Canaan, said he’ll mostly remember the good times with his advanced placement European studies class and being part of a class in which everyone seemed to be cool with everyone else. Leaving his friends behind, though, evoked a single sentence. “It’s bittersweet,” he said.

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