Parents celebrate the Class of 2020, share inspiration and advice


Delaney Muncy, Sports Editor

It is no secret that the class of 2020 has had a tough finish to its senior year. While the pandemic stole many of the typical senior celebrations, that will not stop Milford High School parents from honoring this group of unique individuals.

The Senior All Night Party committee has now planned a celebration on August 6th from 6 p.m to 1 a.m. at 3290 Hickory Ridge in Milford. The party will have food, games, a mock casino, a D.J. a bonfire, psychic, an escape room, and more activities. This “Plan B” event will cost $50 to attend, but will give these seniors a fun way to officially say goodbye to their peers as they move on to their next endeavors. For more information, contact [email protected] 

Parents wanted to give students a unique opportunity to celebrate, and they believe these seniors were special long before this pandemic occurred. 

According to Chris McBride, father of Dawson McBride, these seniors are “a class of high achievers and respectful, good kids.” The class has made a positive impact on the community. Tonia and Timothy Miller, parents of Jake Miller, stated, “how they behave in front of the community is astonishing. Substitute teachers and teachers find them super polite and helpful. They are wonderful kids and treat others very well.”

The Class of 2020 grew up in a particularly unique time in American history. They were born right after 9-11 and ended high school with the first global pandemic in more than 100 years.  “They were born at a time of unrest and are now graduating in yet another time of unrest,” said Melanie Coesens, mother of Brenden Coesens. “They have not been given any breaks along the way. This class will persevere and be more productive adults in their communities and society in general because of the times of major change they grew up in, as well as all that they missed out on. They will work harder than any other graduating classes to prevent their children and grandchildren from experiencing the same feelings of frustration, anger, and denial. They will work for change and “2020 Strong” will be their motto.”

Parents of many 2020 graduates felt these seniors would be powerful because of the turmoil they endured.

Dawn Grigereit, mother of Steven Grigereit, told seniors, “Use your vote.  It’s your voice. Your right as a citizen.  You may not think it matters, but you could change so many things if you would take a stand. Peacefully. As you get older, your views may change, but embrace that and know you will make a difference.” 

This demonstrates the maturity level she senses in this class as a whole. As they reach adulthood and join the real world, they are trusted to use their collective voice to improve our country.   

Many other parents had inspiring messages for their seniors. 

Heather Sinclair, the mother of Ashleigh McFall, shared a message to the class as a whole. “While this year may have been a big disappointment to you, with all the special events and great times with your friends that you missed, just know that this is only high school. There is so much more coming your way that will be even more interesting, fun, and important in your life. High school is significant and can be lots of fun, but what comes now is of your choosing and it will be even better!” 

Chris McBride also shared a message of hope for the future. “The perseverance that this class has had to endure will forever give them an ability to get through anything because of the hardships they dealt with this year. They will be stronger than any other class. They just need to stay positive and true to themselves and never forget all the hard work that got them to this point. You finally made it. Now enjoy it.” 

Parents also had individual messages they wanted to share with their children: Steven Grigereit is a baseball player who had to miss out on his senior year, but his mother Dawn Grigereit knows he will “hit a home run in the game of life.” She told him to “be an example, not the exception.”

Sinclair told Ashleigh to remember to “Have fun, keep working hard, find out (even more) what makes you you, grab onto it and get going! And don’t forget your village behind you.”

Finally, Coesens reminded Brenden to stay true to himself and remain helpful to others. 

“Go after your dreams with enthusiasm and ambition and you will be forever happy with yourself…continue to be a leader, not a follower; be a giver, not a taker. Additionally, remember that it’s okay to fail as long as you tried your best–that’s how you learn. Embrace the diversity, thrive with independence and have the time of your life away from home! I am so proud of you, Bren, and wish you only the best in the future.”

Congrats to the Class of 2020 and their parents, who have shown the enduring love and support needed to guide their children to success.