Zephyrhills High School – 1986


Highlights of 1986

ZHS Awards Diplomas to 199 Happy Class of 1986 Graduates, Zephyrhills News by B.Y. Wickstrom, June 12, 1986

It was standing room only in the Zephyrhills High School Activity Center Friday evening, as 199 members of the class of 1986 received graduation diplomas. Principal Larry Robison estimated the crowd at close to 2,300 parents and friends of the graduates who saw Mrs. Agnes Deal, District 1 School Board Member and James Davis of the District Staff assist ZHS officials in the ceremony.

Prelude, processional and recessional music was by Jan Smith and Joseph Olichney, and prayers were by Dr. Mel Barrows. Assisting in the presentation ceremony was Mrs. Lorraine Castro of the faculty, who read the names of the graduates. As each name was read, applause and shouts of approval were heard.

Thirteen assistant administrators and department heads joined Principal Robison, Davis, Mrs. Deal and Dr. Barrows in the processional and were seated on stage. They wore stoles symbolic of their academic disciplines. Included were B.C. Douglas, Trade and Industrial Arts; Dale Palmer, Social Studies; Ann Crawford, Physical Education; Don Woods, Science; Mrs. Castro, Vocational Coordinator; Ellie Grudzinski, Exceptional Education; Ron Cherry, Administrative Assistant; Gail Reynolds, English and Foreign Language; James Bailey, Mathematics; Caroline Marlette, Media; Terry Turner, Assistant Principal for Administration; Carolyn Allen, Guidance and Ernest Kretschmar, Assistant Principal for Instruction. In addition to the presentation of diplomas, Award Winners were recognized. This year’s class, which was numbered at about 225 just a few weeks ago, was cut to 199 as an estimated 26 seniors were advised their last semester class work did not earn the required graduation credits and they were eight cut from the rolls or they dropped out of school.

The Class of 1986 was the first class since the 188-member class of 1978 to fall below the 200 mark. The first class at ZHS to top the 200 was the Class of 1979 at 206. Last year there were 235 seniors. Other recent totals: 1980: 234; 1981: 230; 1982: 236; 1983: 263, the largest class ever and 1984: 223.

Valedictorian’s Address by Bruce Lovins

Tonight is a very special time for us because we are entering a new stage of our lives. This is a time for farewells and also a time of great rejoicing because we have completed our high school years and we now step into this great world of ours to go our separate ways.

Most of us consider ourselves to be successful in school when we graduate. That is the goal we all have been striving toward for the past 12 years of our lives, but let us remember that true success is not ours to have and to hold until we have completed our life-long search for success and happiness. If we are to reach that success, there are six essential qualities we must always remember: Humility, Sincerity, Courtesy, Wisdom, Charity, and Personal Integrity. Many people believe Humility to be a hindrance rather than a virtue however as Joy McLoy once said, “Humility leads to strength and not to weakness, it is the highest form of self-respect to admit mistakes and then make amends for them,” very often Humility can help us much more than Pride can.

Sincerity is another necessary ingredient to success. We must be true and put a whole-hearted effort into anything we do, if people aren’t sincerely committed in their hearts there is no way they will appear sincere to others.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote, “We must be as courteous to a man as to a picture, which we are willing to give the benefit of a good light.” We should never discount anyone by our first impression but give everyone a chance to show his best.

Many people consider Wisdom to be synonymous with intelligence and knowledge. Knowledge is what we have been acquiring these past 12 years, but we haven’t necessarily been gaining wisdom. Wisdom is personal experience combined with the knowledge we have gained throughout life.

Charity is another key quality of success. Swendenborg, a renowned theologian, said that “True charity is the desire to be useful to others without thought of what we will receive.” It really is true that the more we give, the more we receive in return.

Humility, Sincerity, Courtesy, Wisdom, Charity and Personal Integrity are needed to make a full life, and the most important of these is the last. Integrity is a person’s behavior to which one honestly is an inherent part of integrity. We must be honest not only to other people, but more importantly to ourselves. We must remember, success is something personal and individual to each of us. Our definitions of success may not be those of the person next to us. As Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said, “The talent of success is nothing more then doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you can do.” I believe this class has been very successful. I am sure that as the years go by and we move further apart from each other, our successes will be passed along to all our new friends and those whom we love.  Finally I’d like to wish each and every one of you a very successful and rewarding life. I’d like to end with a thought by Richard Bach, “Don’t be dismayed at goodbyes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again; and meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends.”

Salutatorians Address by Ron Miller Jr.

Good evening, parents, faculty, administration, distinguished guests and fellow classmates. Tonight I am a participant in a ceremony that will introduce many young adults into a society that will continually try their abilities and knowledge. A good education will better prepare us for this transition. Success will not be guaranteed, but the chances for it will greatly be increased.

The past two-thirds of our lives have been spent acquiring the basic knowledge that is now the foundation upon which we will construct our lives. These most recent years here at ZHS have bestowed upon me many experiences, not only academically, but socially and emotionally.

I’m sure we can all recall and relate to the difficulties and confusion encountered in our first year of high school. Perplexity in relation to our first year of high school can be viewed as both external and internal. On one hand, or externally we had to overcome the obstacle of being placed in a school whose format was foreign to us. On the other hand, we also faced internal quandary as a result of being confronted with the responsibilities of a high school student.

The junior year marks the halfway point in high school. We‘re settled into the regiment of high school, but we are consciously looking towards graduation and the ensuing years.

And finally, the senior year—the culmination of all our work and effort. It is this culmination which will serve as a springboard for the rite of passage we are all about to undergo. The consequences of the transition may be likened to the bewilderment encountered in that first year of high school. Just as we became familiar with the high school life we also gain those footholds necessary to attain our goals in life. As Aristotle once wrote, “All who have meditated in the art of governing mankind have been convinced that the fate of empires depends on the education of youth.”

The future depends on us; let our first step be a courageous and successful one.

The President’s Talk by Joey Knight

I, along with approximately 200 of my senior classmates, sit here tonight in the midst of a milestone in our lives. We sit here impatiently anxious to walk across this stage leaving the life of the carefree teenager, limited with responsibilities and full of pleasures behind and entering what has been called the “real world” of the responsible adult.

We have been trained exceptionally well by our teachers here at ZHS they have done their job with great skill and sacrificial devotion in helping us to prepare for the harsh reality of adulthood which is so imminently upon us.

So here we sit, on the verge of reaching a goal that has been sought for 12 years, and ready to face a near lifetime of new obstacles ahead. However, before we take these few gallant steps into a new life, let us briefly go back in time and recall these vivid memories which will linger with us for the rest of our lives.

Our high school years are filled with innumerable lasting recollections of pain and pleasure, victory and defeat, longsuffering and sweet endurance. Some memories will stay in our minds forever, while others we hope will leave the depths of our innermost thoughts for eternity. We will love to flashback on such memorable events as the Homecoming football game, the high-spirited pep-rallies, the prom, and other various traditions of high school which are meant to be remembered forever.

We will also remember those special moments with our friends in and out of school. Some of those friends we may not see again for several years. Some of those friends we man never see again for the rest of our lives. It is these moments with these special friends that will also remain stored in the deepest valleys of our minds possibly for the rest of our lives.

However there are those other memories of our high school years which we would just as soon forget forever, but can’t seem to rid from our memories no matter how hard we try. There are the heart-breaking last-second losses on the athletic field, the embarrassment of getting caught for cheating on a test, or the small quarrels with our friends over trivial matters which seemed imperative at the time.

There are also harsher memories, those of saying goodbye to a classmate who is moving away, possible to never be heard from again, or even the tragic unexpected, death of one of our classmates as a result of an automobile accident or other grim casualties. Yes, there are several various kinds of memories which will stay with us forever, all as a result of the stepping stone of life called high school.

As time now draws closer and closer for us, the class of 1986 to take the much-awaited walk across this stage, let us spend these last few precious moments to thank those many hard-working, caring people who have made it possible for us to be part of this ceremony tonight.

First, we must thank our parents, who have always been there, from the first time we stepped onto the school bus to go to our first day of kindergarten until right now, encouraging and helping us in every aspect of our school lifetime, cheering us on in our times of joy and cheering us up in our times of depression.

Secondly, we must certainly thank the many, many teachers who have brought us along through the years doing their jobs with great care and dedication. Their extra time spent helping us in times of confusion and lack of understanding is greatly appreciated. It takes a lot of care and perseverance to be a teacher, and it is the special care which will make our entry into adult life much easier. We sincerely thank them all.

Finally, I personally want to thank God for being with us all in every second of life. It is the Lord Jesus Christ who carried the tedious load when we felt we couldn’t go another day. It is also He who has constantly guided us, showing us the paths which we should follow and keeping us safe right up until this very moment. And it is He who will continue to guide us and look over us in every step of our future lifetime. Yes, it is our Heavenly Father who deserves the most thanks for allowing us to be here tonight to celebrate this high point in our lives.

Now, the time has nearly come upon us to make this anxiously awaited transition from childhood to adulthood. In conclusion, let me just say that I have been honored to attend this quality institution for three years. I could not imagine spending some of the greatest years of my life at any other school. And I am even more honored to have been the president and leader of this outstanding class for three years.

Commencement Friday for 199 Seniors at ZHS, Zephyrhills News, June 5, 1986

Friday night, 199 Zephyrhills High School seniors will receive their diplomas as the Class of 1986 prepares to graduate.  

Commencement exercises will begin at 8 p.m. at the Activity Center of Zephyrhills High School when organist Joseph Olichney plays the processional, “Pomp and Circumstance,” by Elgar.

Following an opening delegation of faculty members, the graduates will march in, led by Bruce Lovins, Valedictorian and Ronald Miller Jr, Salutatorian. Opening prayer will be given by Dr. Mel Barrows, pastor of the First Church of the Nazarene, while Principal Larry Robison will introduce the guests. Salutatorian Ronald Miller will be the first of three special speakers. His salutatory will be followed by the address to the senior class by class president, Joey Knight.

Robison will then present the annual awards. Those include awards to both boys and girls for School spirit, Citizenship, School Service, Leadership and Best All-Around.

The Valedictory address will be delivered by Bruce Lovins. Following will be presentation of diplomas by School Board Member, Agnes Deal; Jim Davis, Director of Teacher-Student Relations and Robison.

The closing benediction by Dr. Barrows will be followed by the recessional to the “March of the Priests” by Verdi.

Ushers for the commencement will be selected by members of the junior class including Mark Besecker, Mark Brissette, Linh Cao, Deborah Castor, Stacy Hartley, Kim Klein, Ina Lewis, Missy Mikolajczak, Dung Ngo, Colleen Ogilbee, Dina Rowland, Jennifer Rowland, Jay Swann, Angel Vendl and Amy Williams.

School Daze by Kim Kagey, Zephyrhills News, January 23, 1986

Next week is going to be a very special one for ZHS. Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday the Southern Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools Committee will be reviewing every aspect of ZHS to determine its worthiness as an accredited high school. As reported in last week’s School Daze, students will be released at 1 p.m. so that the entire faculty may meet with the committee. Also the composite school report will be on display for the public at the same time and date.  

Many students participated in the Governor’s PRIDE competition. The school winners are as follows: Ron Miller in Social Studies; Missy Barret in Math; Bruce Lovins in Science; and Kim Kagey in English. The winners in the county competition were announced Monday, Kim Kagey, yours truly, was the county winner in the English category. The writing portfolio that was submitted will be sent to the Regional and State Contests.

Twenty members of this year’s All-County Band will be from Zephyrhills. They are as follows: Robert Griffen, Mike Bodine, Cathy Ostrander, Melissa Jullian, Ann Griffen, Jeff Lee, Sam Barnard, Don Preston, Michelle White, Jill Clark, Teryl Benjamin, Steve Sellars, Ricki Bloom, David Corradini, Brent Dunlap, Robert Scheckler, Tevis Yount, Tammy Alvarez, April Taylor and Anna Trebour.  Congratulations Band Members!

Five of the ZHS senior girls will be participating in the “Miss Pasco Pageant” in February. They are Michelle Pollock, Karen Bishop, Kelly Bishop, Cherrie Peterson and Jamie TenBrink. Good Luck girls!

The Project Graduation Foundation is actively working to organize the event called “Project Graduation” at Busch Gardens all night after graduation June 6. They are attempting to get such noted entertainers as Bill Cosby, Cyndi Lauper, and Huey Lewis and the News to perform for the evening.

Baccalaureate Sunday for ZHS Class of 1986, Zephyrhills News, May 29, 1986

The annual Baccalaureate service for the members of the graduating class of Zephyrhills High School will be Sunday at the First Church of the Nazarene.

Featured speaker for the inspirational address will be Dr. Mel Barrows, pastor. The processional of the 199-member class of 1986 will begin at 7:30 p.m.

Organize for the service is Joseph Olichney and the processional will be to “Pomp and Circumstance” by Elgar. Leading the march will be Valedictorian Bruce Lovins and Salutatorian, Ronald Miller Jr.

The invocation will be given by the Reverend Ann Godbold, Associate Minister of the First United Methodist Church and will be followed by remarks of welcome and announcements by Larry Robison, Principal.  Special music, “Now the World is Yours” by Carl Niggard, Jr. will be performed by members of the ZHS Vocal Ensemble directed by Jan Smith and accompanied by Yen Son Lew.

Following the inspirational talk and the benediction given by the Reverend All Godbold, the recessional will be to “March of the Priests” played by organist, Olichney.

Ushers will be members of the sophomore class and include: Angela Anderson, David Ballesteros, Jeanine Boyd, Tomala Collins, Cindy Geiger, Cheryl Jordan, Heather Kestenis, Vicky Lewis, Sheryl Lovins, Amy Musielak and Eric Smith.

Officers of the Class of 1986 are: Joey Knight, President; Traci Timmons, Vice President; Anne Spanger, Secretary and Cherie Peterson, Treasurer.

Honor students including Lovins and Miller are: Teryl Benjamin, Sandra Blake, Angela Brooks, My Yung Cao, Brian Crosby, Suzanne Drake, Deedra Ellison, Jill Finnerty, Melissa Garrett, Melissa Julian, Diane Joyner, Kimberly Kagey, Joseph Knight, Lynda Kress, Lorne Maled, Stacy Martin, Annette Pagan, Melanie Peryea, Alicia Piwowar, Susan Reid, Nancy Russell, Melinda Saxson, Traci Timmons, Anna Trebour, Christy Walls and Susan Youmans.

Two ZHS Students Named As National Award Winners, Zephyrhills News, June 5, 1986

The National Secondary Education Council announced that Ed Ogden and Tammi Croteau, both students at Zephyrhills High School have been named Academic All-Americans.

The NSEC has established the Academic All-American Scholar Award Program in order to offer deserved recognition to superior students who excel in the academic disciplines. The Academic All-American Scholars must earn a 3.3 or better grade point average. Only scholars selected by a secondary school instructor, counselor or other qualified sponsor are accepted. These are awards few students attain.  Ed and Tami were nominated for this award by C. Paul Steuart, band instructor. Both Ed and Tammi will be featured in the Academic All-American Scholar Directory, which is published nationally.

Area, House Mourns Ray Stewart—Heart Attack Claims Popular State Representative, Zephyrhills News, May 29, 1986, by B.Y. Wickstrom, Editor

Ray Stewart’s rich, exuberant life ended at a place he enjoyed—an athletic field—and in a city in which he enjoyed continuing a long period of service to others—the state’s capital, Tallahassee.

State Representative Raymond B. Stewart was just 56 years of age when he was stricken by a violent and immediately fatal heart attack on the women’s softball field at Florida State University Sunday evening. His death cut short a promising career as a legislator. He was serving his second 2-year term and was regarded by area political pros as “unbeatable” for reelection this fall.

“Representative Ray” as many close friends had come to call him in the last few years was playing first base in a practice session as the Democrats in the Florida House sharpened their skills in preparation for the annual Memorial Day “King of the Hill” softball game against House Republicans.

An athlete all of his life, Stewart had expressed enthusiasm to his fellows about the team’s prospects; moments later he was gone.

….Stewart Memorial Scholarship Fund Established for Donations

A scholarship fund as a memorial to Raymond B. Stewart has been established to which friends of the late educator (ZHS Principal) and public servant may contribute. The first awarding of the scholarship grant, in an amount to be determined by the size to which the Raymond B. Stewart Memorial Scholarship Fund has grown at the time, will be at Awards Day in May of 1987. Members of the committee on arrangements and to whom memorial gifts may be given as well as at the bank are four former teachers who were close to Ray Stewart: Mrs. Betty Hall, Chairman; James Davis, Johnny Clements and Stanley B. Kendrick.

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