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Centralia’s Chester Boren Middle School holds 8th grade promotion

Posted on Tuesday, May 28, 2024 at 9:03 pm

Kandice Noonan and Sophie Daum gave the keynote speeches during the 2024 Chester Boren  Middle School eighth grade promotion, at which 80 CBMS  students advanced from eighth grade to high school.

The bleachers were packed, and there were less than 10 empty chairs on the floor.

Both delivered messages of memories, history and hope.

Promotion speaker Sophie Daum

Promotion speaker Kandice Noonan

Noonan began by recognizing Martin Luther King.  “’Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the full staircase.’ To apply Martin Luther King to school and memories, I would say that staircase is every big event and moment we have gone through together as a group. Today we will be stepping across that stage together, another step on that staircase we have walked on together. Other steps on that staircase are challenges we have gone through… Other ones are happy memories we can only look forward to in the near future. Lastly, my fellow students, I would like to remind  you to never give up and keep on going and we will complete that staircase together.”

Nathan Gordon’s last promotion as CBMS principal.

As the applause of the more than estimated 300 friends, family and CBMS staff faded away, Daum took the podium.

“Our time together has been amazing and fun and I am looking forward to our futures in high school.  I  would also like to thank some important people. To our teachers; you guys had to deal with us this year you taught us so many things that are more important than school work. Whether it was kindness, humbleness… It has helped us get to where we are in our education. But my gratitude not only goes to our core teachers but to all the other staff members who brought us through the middle school. We are lucky enough to have Mr. Gordon and Mrs. Watermann come with us to the high school. They have  helped us make it through the past few years and who we are today.”

From there Daum moved on to what she called “lighter subjects.”

“I would like share with all of you in the audience some of my favorite moments from the last few years. Close to the beginning of the year we had our homecoming parade. I  was on the CBMS volleyball float. I  was lucky enough to see everyone who had come to support us. While we were driven around town we go to hear chants and cheers showing pride in our school from everyone who had come out to support our school. At that moment I realized the being a panther was more than just going to school in Centralia. Being a panther is supporting our team, classmates and community. Another moment this year that was memorable was our 8th-grade formal. It didn’t matter if you had a date to go with or not. Everyone  showed up and had fun together. All night there were compliments thrown out to others and laughter throughout our time there. Everyone danced throughout the night until it was over, although they did not play ‘You are my Sunshine,’ for the boys I can confidently say everyone had fun. Finishing my time up here, I would like to enlighten you with thoughts about our futures. Michael Josephson once said: ‘Take pride in hour far you’ve come, have faith in how far you can go, but do not forget to enjoy the journey.”

Aniya Havens GRIT award winner

Jensen Decker and Gradon Hedberg starting things off with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Students entering for the promotion.

Above and below, the crowd of well-wishers