Class of 2014 Graduates

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More than 140 members of the Hampton Bays High School Class of 2014 graduated on June 28 in a ceremony held under a tent on the high school’s athletic field.

Superintendent of Schools Lars Clemensen touched on community pride, service to others and commitment to success, themes that were woven throughout this year’s commencement exercises. He explained how the graduates’ time in Hampton Bays had prepared them for the next chapter in their lives. “Your mold has been cast, formed, fine-tuned and perfected over time as a result of your experiences in Hampton Bays,” he said. “You need to figure out how to best use that mold…Figure out where you will do good.”

This year’s commencement speaker was Olympic silver medalist Josephine Pucci, a member of the U.S. Olympic Women’s Hockey Team and a Harvard University student with ties to Hampton Bays. In an inspirational speech that garnered a standing ovation, she spoke of never giving up and never forgetting where one comes from, and discussed how she had overcome adversity – most notably from a life-altering brain injury that had left her unable to function for quite some time – to achieve her goals. “Everyone has their own Mount Everest to climb,” she said. “Dream of reaching that peak.”

Valedictorian Christen Bellucci reminded her peers to “remain true to yourself and to never forget where you came from,” and salutatorian Daniella Greene spoke of the strength of Hampton Bays roots, stating, “Everything we learned here is a part of who we are.” Class President Darby Tucker thanked her fellow graduating Baymen for giving her the “best memories, greatest laughs and proudest moments.” “My heart will always be here,” she said.

During the ceremony, Kasandra Phillips, who memorialized the momentous occasion with her video camera, led the Pledge of Allegiance. Class members Thomas Capuano, Greene, Rebecca Martinez, Christian Ruiz, Mikela Ryan and Gioia Sacco and sang the national anthem, and select members of the chorus sang “Pure Imagination.” In keeping with tradition, members of the Hampton Bays High School band welcomed alumni to sit in for the graduation musical performances.