By Steve Powell
MARYSVILLE – Graduating seniors sound a lot like teachers and parents.
That’s what students at Allen Creek Elementary and other grade schools in Marysville must have thought.
Seniors from Marysville high schools took trips back down memory lane Monday and Tuesday, visiting the schools they went to as kids.
•”Asking for help is not a bad thing.”
•”Take advantage of the opportunities. Try it. Join it.”
•”Don’t be afraid to make new friends.”
•”Always listen to your teachers.”
Taylor Thomas, one of the Marysville-Pilchuck grads, went to Allen Creek Monday and planned to go to Kellogg Marsh Tuesday as he went to both grade schools.
“They can take our advice or not,” he said. “But it’s pretty special to come back.”
Fifth-grader Lillian Bargo, the school’s vice president, didn’t have much to say about the event, other than it was “cool.”
The 16 graduates were met outside by a group of school leaders holding signs of support. They then wandered through the halls lined with students, exchanging “high 5’s.” When they got to the gym they looked at class pictures on a wall of when they went to Allen Creek. They then talked a little about themselves and answered questions.
Many of the students, who also were from Marysville Getchell and Arts and Tech, said that P.E. teacher Cathy Johnson was their favorite.
“I take a huge interest in every single kid,” she said. “I find out what they like, what drives them, what they enjoy.”
Johnson also said she pays attention and remembers names. If a student is not engaged in an activity, she gives them options on something else to do. And they celebrate their successes, joke around a lot and listen to music.
“We talk about life’s problems,” she said, adding many of the students have come back over the years and some have even volunteered back at the school.
Johnson asked the students a tough question. What was the hardest thing they had to overcome to graduate?
One student said depression, another dealt with pancreas and Type 1 diabetes issues, another’s dad died, another broke his back but still received a soccer scholarship.
But Chloe Morgan could have spoken for all of them when she made reference to the shooting at M-P when they were all freshmen.
“I lost a few of my friends,” she said. “But you learn to forgive and live a better life for those who can’t.”