Del Oro sends off class of 2010

More than 350 seniors receive their diplomas
By: Martha Garcia, Loomis News Editor
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Graduation day, said Del Oro High School senior Brandon Markin, was icing on the cake. “This is the easy part,” Markin said as he waited with the 350-plus graduates to hear the Del Oro band play “Pomp and Circumstance” and for the processional to begin. The 2010 graduates got their sendoff Saturday morning at Golden Eagle stadium with lots of cheers and applause, accompanied with the usual words of advice from speakers. Principal Dan Gayaldo admonished the graduates: “Students, be especially kind to your parents today. This is a tough day for adults.” He also reviewed the class’ academic successes. “At our senior awards ceremony held last week, they received over $75,000 in awards and scholarships from our local community. In addition, they set a record for scholarships from colleges and universities, valued at over $2 million.” Gayaldo thanked teachers for making a difference in the lives of the students, especially during challenging times. “Your efforts have allowed our school to keep as many programs in place as possible, clearly showing your commitment that students come first,” he said. Gayaldo, a Del Oro history teacher before assuming the helm as principal last fall, recounted the school’s history. “In 1959, Del Oro High opened it doors for the very first time,” he said. But it wasn’t easy, as voters district wide rejected bond measures three times beginning in February 1959. Each time, Loomis voters supported the measure. However, the Board of Education agreed to open Del Oro to 175 freshman and sophomore students, on Sept. 29, 1959. Finally, on May 3, 1960, voters passed the measure, by just 59 votes. “The funds allowed the school to open the next year for all grades, and the first seniors graduated in 1961,” Gayaldo said. The class of 2010 was the 49th to graduate from Del Oro, and Emily Hentschke was the valedictorian. She told graduates to look beyond the surface and look for the good in people and things. “Seek the beauty in others by focusing on who they really are rather than who their reputation says they are. Seek the beauty in life by focusing on that rainbow at the end rather than the storm,” Emily said. And, she said, “Pursue your passion and never settle for anything short of your dreams.” Salutatorian Karla Robinson told her classmates to look back at their high-school years and “be proud of your achievements and regret nothing.” The last four years may not have gone according to plan, but they were worth it, she said. “It brought you here, to this moment … this is only the beginning."