Vernon Paralympian Sonja Gaudet (right) has been elected to Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame as part of the induction class of 2020-21. (File photo) The Class of 2020 from Enderby’s A.L. Fortune Secondary toss their grad caps into the air (while complying with social distancing) during grad ceremonies Monday, June 1. (A.L. Fortune photo) Vernon Secondary School Class of 2020 members were taken in groups of 16 to the Vernon Courthouse stairs for the traditional class photo. Except this year, photographer Wayne Emde took nine images of students interspersed on the stairs, and Photoshop artist Mary-Anne Morgan melded the images into one class photo. W.L. Seaton Secondary grad Lusi Barni crosses the stage to collect her diploma Thursday, June 18, 2020. The physically-distanced event saw small groups of students and their parents celebrate the milestone in a ‘drive-thru’ fashion. (Brendan Shykora - Vernon Morning Star) Vernon Secondary School Class of 2020 member Gabriella Boyd leaves her mark on Vernon’s Suicide Hill Wednesday, June 17. Boyd and fellow graduates became the first VSS grad class since 1981 to paint the hill following permission from the City of Vernon. (Roger Knox - Morning Star) The 29 graduates of Vernon Christian School were given a ‘Hollywood’ sendoff with a pop-up physically-distanced drive-in film screening June 16, 2020. (VCS Contributed) Pleasant Valley Secondary grads rode in style as they paraded around Armstrong Monday, June 15. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star) Kalamalka Secondary Class of 2020 member Olivia Seibel, wearing her grad finery, appears to be officially greeted at Coldstream’s Kal Lake Cattle Co. by Cedar, a mother Angus cow, on Saturday, June 13. (Tanya Seibel photo) Vernon Senior Secondary Class of 1981 spray paints their names on Suicide Hill on 30th Avenue on June 27. (Submitted)
Grad plans change amid pandemic
COVID-19 halted many traditions in store for North Okanagan’s classes of 2020.
Organizers worked quickly to find some way to mark the monumental occasion with a safe celebration of sorts that was, of course, compliant with ever-changing regulations ordered by the province and health experts.
Students at Lumby’s Charles Bloom Secondary and Vernon Secondary made their mark on Cop Hill and Suicide Hill, respectively. The latter was a tradition last practised in the ’80s and led to a months-long road closure.
A.L. Fortune Secondary in Enderby held a socially distanced grad ceremony where small groups of students, parents and teachers observed a modified crossing of the stage. W.L. Seaton graduates did something similar.
Pleasant Valley Secondary students were treated to parade put on by parents. The event, which was not school-sanctioned, saw grads paraded through town in grad gear June 15.
Vernon Christian School gave its 29 graduates a Hollywood sendoff complete with a drive-in film documenting speeches, MC notes and staff sendoffs.
Gaudet named to Hall of Fame
Vernon’s Sonja Gaudet became Canada’s most decorated Paralympic curler, winning three Paralympic gold medals and three world wheelchair curling championships.
Gaudet was announced, May 27, as one of the 11 members in the Class of 2020-21 to be inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame.
“This whole journey has taken on a life of its own,” said Gaudet. “I’ve been supported by so many people. I’m grateful to my family, my coaches and my teammates.”
Good Samaritan turns in $7,000
An Enderby business owner went from tears of panic to tears of joy after losing a substantial amount of cash and having it returned.
Faith in humanity has been restored for River Johnson, after losing a deposit bag containing $7,000 cash on June 2 at Walmart.
Walmart employee Ralph Buisine discovered the missing deposit and turned it in. It was returned to her in full.
“I couldn’t believe the humbleness that he had,” said Johnson. “I want to hug the guy.”
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Best of 2020