Society

SALUTATORIAN: 'If you put in the work, the results will come'

Reporter/Mike Brown Jason Korenek gives the salutatory speech Friday. He is the son of Mike and Genella Korenek. Reporter/Mike Brown Jason Korenek gives the salutatory speech Friday. He is the son of Mike and Genella Korenek. Editor's note: Following is the salutatory address delivered at commencement exercises by Jason Korenek.

" The grass is not, in fact, always greener on the other side of the fence. Fences have nothing to do with it. When crossing over fences, carry water with you and tend the grass wherever you may be."—Robert Fulghum

Good evening classmates, parents, families and friends. Welcome and congratulations to the graduating Class of 2009.

As we look back tonight on our past, we should also look to our future. Our future is at our fingertips and we are the ones who control it.

I look back on my past and great memories come to mind. From Grandma and Grandpa Korenek's house playing the garden with Cousin Randy, Discovery Days with Mrs. Theresa, elementary school with Mrs. Camp, junior-high school lunch with Mr. Streck, three years of fantastic cooking at Mrs. Betchan's.

Even the familiar voice of Mr. Sanders saying "what you got going on here?" as he examines our excuse of facial hair on all our chins.

And, of course, my parents, Mike and Genella, I could not have asked for a better education and memories than what I have received from all of them.

A memory lasts forever, Never does it die. True friends stay together,

And never say goodbye.

Fellow classmates, how to I begin to say "thank you" for these last 13 years? A lot of you began this journey with me. Some of you came into my life later. Through the years our paths have crossed, intersected, veered away from and then come back together.

I know there will be those of you who I never see again and there will be those of you I will forever know.

As we head off in different directions, know that I appreciate all I have learned from you and the many memories we have shared.

From intense football games to the paint fights when building the homecoming float, I will cherish these memories forever.

We are nowhere near the persons we will become. Graduation from high school is really only a continuation of what was started long ago. College, our first "real job," marriage and having a family will be a path for some and not for others.

I have always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come.

I don't do things half-heartedly because I know if I do then I can expect half-hearted results. I ask each of you to do the same. Whether it is with college or just life in general, hold yourself to the highest standards.

You are the only one who you must impress, but remember we are not just individuals, we are always part of something. And that something is what makes living the most wonderful thing.

You are capable of accomplishing great things. There is, however, a price to be paid to be good at something. You need to earn the right to be good, have respect in your field and use your abilities the absolute best you can.

The price will be your time. That means sacrificing, choosing study ahead of other things, including the bar. The price will be relentless dedication. It will consume your thoughts.

The price will be failure. At times things will go well and you will need to keep your head up and persevere. The good news is you can learn how to be a success from all this.

I must say to my teaches, and especially my coaches. You have taught us valuable life lessons.

Mrs. Dean taught us that we would work even when everyone else in school is watching movies.

Coach Gandy made "shut up" his trademark with the senior linemen. Mrs. King will always haunt my dreams with another essay assignment.

And most of all I would like to thank Coach Miller for making us into respectable young men in the community while on the road to becoming great athletes. The memories myself and every other senior have gained will be treasured forever.

In closing I wold like to once again say "thank you" to everyone here tonight. Each and every one of you have touched the lives of one or more of these graduating seniors. Know that we appreciate you and will forever remember you.

Seniors, the best way to predict the future is to create it. Enjoy creating yours. Thank you.


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2009-06-04 digital edition



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