By Debbie Adams
The William Byrd High School Class of 2020 seniors have proved themselves to be a resilient group. They have persevered through the challenging spring of their senior year resulting from COVID-19, celebrated with a Senior Parade through the streets of Vinton on their way to receive their diplomas in a drive-through event at the high school, and then graduated in an online ceremony.
Over 40 students in the Class of 2020 earned grade point averages of 4.0 or better and were named as valedictorians during the virtual ceremony on May 19. They are: Olivia Ashworth, Logan Baker, Camryn Band, Ethan Bowser, Cameron Dalton, Rachel Deatherage, Sydney Deitrich, Caroline Faulkner, Zachary FiGart, Madeleine Glover, Jack Halliwill, Elizabeth Hancock, Eden Harrilla, Emmy Harris, Grecia Hernandez’Perez, Zach Howard, Alec Humphries, Bryant Humphries, Jacob Johnson, Evelyn Laherty, Gregory Lane, Haley Lawson, Auria Martin, Jackson Moses, Abigail Murtaugh, Emily Nicely, Kelly O’Connor, Benjamin Onwi, Chloe Pascoe, Olivia Robertson, Daniel Shelton, Kaylee Shrewsbury, Leah Shrewsbury, Ethan Smith, Ethan Spradlin, Briahna Stacey, Mason Stanley, Alison Stoehr, Kaleigh Stover, Emily Brynn Tardy, Hayley Ward, Claire Webb, Erin Wienke, and Kayla Witt.
Traditionally, Byrd students walk across the stage at the Salem Civic Center to receive their diplomas in front of a screen displaying their photographs and future plans. That tradition continued in the online ceremony this year. Some students are continuing their education; some are joining the workforce; some are joining the military.
From the Class of 2020, five students will be entering military service. Jaylen Baggatta and Jonathan Davis will be serving in the United States Army. Mason Gunn and Christina Reamey will be serving in the United States Navy. Bryce Corkery has accepted an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Students entering the workforce include: Joshua Baldwin, Montana Sue Barber, Austin Behrens, Caiden Bowles-Manning, Jonathan Boyd, Benjamin Brabham, Ryan Brinn, Jacob Clifton, Gregory Blake Cundiff, Ethan DeGeorgis, Wyatt Early, Breanne Evans, Christopher Floyd, Michael Froeschl, Gabriel Goad, John Paul Green, Logan Hardman, Shaun Hudson, Zacharie Hughes, Joshua Jennings, Isabella Karnes, Nathanial Kelley, Jacob Kingery, Kole Kingery, Zachary Leffell, Kevin Lemus-Chavez, Hannah Long, Lina Lopez, Darrick Love, Jr., Quinn Lyle, James May, Lucas McClanahan, Jaclyn McPherson, Hunter Meador, Justice Meador, Payton Meadows, Tyler Mills, Kyle Montgomery, Sullivan Moore, Gavin Mullen, Erica Nutter, Eric Oliver, Gabrayal Pearce, JaTavion Roach, Monica Rodriguez Muniz, Carver Rothrock, Khyree Rowles, Shaheer Saunders, Jr., Luke Seifert, Paul Anthony Sheets, Anthony Smith, Nyoka Nykole Sparks, Jacob Spickard, Cameron Trent, Desmond Turner, Nicholas Allen Vassar, Dylan Vess, Noah Wells, James Wilhelm, Morgan Wood, Renee Wright, and Taylor Wright.
Students who plan to continue their education at Virginia Western Community College are: Cheyenne Allison, Jeremy Austin, Kirsten Bailey, Alexandra Barbour, Garrett Beamer, Ty Blackwood, Clarissa Blankenship, Logan Bond, Skylar Brady, Jacob Brammer, Audrey Brown, James Buchanan, Travon Calloway, Wake Christopher, Amiyah Clingenpeel, Aliyah Creasy, Judson Crowell, Grace Dillon, Benjamin Donahue, Robert Faust, Katlyn Dawn Ferguson, Collin Glass, Jayden Glass, Zachary Goad, Ethan Gray, Olivia Grisso, Ronald Grome, Bethany Hale, Cassidy Hall, Colby Hedrick, Hannah Helmintoller, James Henegar, Maryanne Hoffman, Hunter Howard, Alexander Huffman, Mason James, Connor Johnson, Jacob Johnson, Landon Johnson, Shakira Johnson, Brianna King, Grace King, Amanda Kline, Christopher Kunc, Griffin Lane, Savanna Lear, Jonah Lilly, Kaitlyn Logan, Michael Lovell, Andrew Manor, Dominic Matthews, Haley Mattox, Joshua Moore, Kendall Moore, Nathan Patrick, Gabriel Patton, Erica Perrington, Isabella Powell, Jared Power, Emily Purcell, Spike Purcell, Victoria Robertson, Aaliyah Saunders, Adam Saunders, Robert Saunders, Adam Schneider, Gabriella Schweiger’Bynaker, Taylor Shibley, Ethan Smith, Cody Southers, Jason Stanley, Cole Stohler, Timothy Strom, Nathan Sullivan, Taylor Swayne, Jacob Thacker, Abrigail Turner, Eden Walls, Sarah Webb, Victoria Webb, Noah Woolfolk, Graham Workman, Scott Wyatt, Stephanie Zaragoza’Pena, and Deanna Zivelonghi.
American Musical and Dramatic Academy: David Scott
Bluefield College: Trevor Thompson
Bridgewater College: Sloane Morton
Carson Newman University: Nathaniel Hall
Christopher Newport University: Logan Baker and Daniel Shelton
College of William and Mary: Madeleine Glover and Bryant Humphries
Concord University: Jacob Johnson
Culinary Institute of America: John Catron
Eastern Mennonite University: Ethan Spraker
Emory and Henry University: Liah Davis
Ferrum College: Isaac Howard
George Mason University: Rachel Barker, Anna Fenimore, Evan Garst, Emily Huff, Kamryn Kilinski, and Abigail Murtaugh
Georgia Tech: Erin Wienke
Greensboro College: Skylar Mathis
Hollins University: Chelsea Doss
James Madison University: Piper Brown, Alexis Dean, Bryce France, Eden Harrilla, Haley Lawson, Keaton Lyle, Kelly O’Connor, Chloe Pascoe, Kaycie Robertson, Nicholas Semones, Joseph Shail, Kaylee Shrewsburgy, Leah Shrewsbury, Caleb Speck, Taylor Suttenfield, and Emily Brynn Tardy
Johns Hopkins University: Ben Onwi
Lancaster Bible College: Naythan Hayes
Liberty University: Gavin Chrisley, Josiah Elmore, Danica Fralin, Elizabeth Hancock, and Kayla Witt
Longwood University: Camden Dippel, Caroline Faulkner, and Briahna Stacey
Old Dominion University: Autumns Goins
Paul Mitchell The School: Stephanie Dinnerville
Princeton University: Grecia Hernandez’ Perez
Radford University: Fiona Belcher, Maegan Burnette, Cade Crawford, Alexis Downs, Nicole Edmonds, Ashlyn Gaddy, Zachary Gross, Arianna Holmes, Alyssa Jamison, and Madison Perritt.
Radford University Carilion: Chloe Deal, Auria Martin, Kayla Rippey, Abigail Stinnett, and Ethan Wood
Roanoke College: Kristina Calhoun, Rachel Deatherage, RoAnna Hylton, and Kallie Parrish
Roanoke County Fire Academy: Robert Hurd
Shenandoah University: Elijah West
University of Cincinnati: Evelyn Laherty
University of Lynchburg: Brianna Hodges, Bradley St. Clair, and Alexa Powell
University of Virginia: Jack Halliwill, Emily Nicely, Ethan Spradlin, Alison Stoehr, and Hayley Ward
University of Virginia College at Wise: Gregory Lane
Virginia Commonwealth University: Aimee Harrision, Jacob Marcus, and Kim Hoyle
Virginia Tech: Olivia Ashworth, Camryn Band, Ethan Bowser, Will Cummings, Cameron Dalton, Sydney Deitrich, Zach FiGart, Emmy Harris, Cameron Harshbarger, Zach Howard, Alec Humphries, Brian McCormack, Jackson Moses, Olivia Robertson, Mason Stanley, Kaleigh Stover, and Claire Webb.
Wilson Workforce Center: Derek Proffitt
Wingate University: Kiely Fletcher and Chelie Plaster
Graduates with plans to be determined: Luke Barrett, Brandon Hyde, Chase Kendall, and Brandon Smith