THOMASVILLE — More than 100 members of the Thomasville High School graduating class of 2020 got together one final time — albeit socially distanced and wearing masks.

THS held an in-person graduation for its seniors Friday night at Veterans Memorial Stadium. Friends and families sat in both the home and visitors’ sides of the stands.

“On behalf of the administrators, faculty, staff and senior class of Thomasville High School, we welcome you to the Class of 2020 non-virtual graduation,” said Zaria Meeks, the senior class president.

Meeks noted the unprecedented times that led to the socially-distanced graduation a month after the official last day of school.

“We don’t know what is to come,” she said, “but we do know we have been equipped to face any challenge before us. We are extremely grateful to our parents, teachers and staff for enlightening and encouraging us through the past four years to get us to this moment. We have been exposed to many principles and precepts, to expand our thought process, forming a solid foundation for us to build an exciting future.”

Thomasville City Schools Superintendent Ben Wiggins said graduation is a time of celebration and reflection.

“Your graduation honors you and your parents. After tonight’s fanfare, I hope that you will look back on your time at Thomasville High School and remember the values of respect, perseverance and integrity that you have acquired.”

Dr. Shannon Norfleet pointed out there had not been a rehearsal for the students, in order to limit their exposure.  

“It’s funny Zaria started by welcoming us to a non-virtual graduation ceremony this year,” he said. “A lot of things are different this year.”

Friday night was also one of Dr. Norfleet’s last acts as THS principal. He has accepted the position of superintendent of Worth County Schools.

“I am truly honored and grateful to be here, tonight, in-person, with each one of you,” he said. "It may not be what we expected, but we should all be grateful for being here.”

Editor Pat Donahue can be reached at (229) 226-2400 ext. 1806.

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