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Wayne High School graduating class of 2024 cap and gown photo.

First off, I want to thank you all for coming to Wayne High School’s class of 2024 graduation. It means so much to each and every one of us to see friends, family, and community members coming and supporting us all. 

I can’t believe the day has finally come. I know that I have been counting down the months, days, minutes, and seconds until graduation, but now that it is here I wish that I could turn back time. 

I have been so blessed to be surrounded by my wonderful peers, which have made my high school experience a very unique one. We have all had our ups and our downs, but I wouldn’t want to experience high school with any other group of people. 

I want to thank the amazing faculty and staff for helping us get through high school so that we could be here tonight. We are very grateful for the time and effort you have put into teaching us all.

I’m guessing that by now you have noticed the big group of people that all look a little bit like me. My family is my rock and I would not be the person I am today without them. Growing up the youngest of seven was hard. I would watch all of my siblings graduate, move out, and start their own families all while I was still at home going through elementary and middle school. That did mean that I was able to get all of Mom and Dad’s attention (and money) growing up, though. 

My brothers, sisters, and in-laws may have teased me growing up, but now I see that they were just trying to help me build character (at least that is what they will tell you). They are all such amazing people and I am so honored to call them my siblings.

My mom is the definition of love and selflessness. She has taught me to be kind, loving, and helpful. Before I leave the house she always tells me how much she loves me and to work hard. I loved it when she would say those words to me as a reminder before I went to school, sports practice, or anywhere else, and I will remember the lessons she has taught me my whole life.

My dad has taught me how to work hard for what I want. All of you know him as Coach Ellett, but I have had the privilege to know him not only as Coach, but as Dad as well. When I came into high school he decided to retire from coaching the sport he loved most so that he could run around watching me play all of my different sports. My dad has spent countless hours learning how to throw the discus and driving me to BYU in Provo to throwing camps twice a week for months. He is the reason I am the thrower that I am today. 

I want my parents to know that I am so grateful to them for being my biggest supporters. I love you. 

My grandma Karen has one rule in her house. She will cook the food, but you have to go get your own plate. I don’t think she realizes how much I have thought about that saying and interpreted it into my daily life. There are so many opportunities for you out in the world, but you have to go out there and work hard for it because no one is going to just give it to you. Class of 2024, the food is cooked, it is time for you to go get your plate.

by Lacey Ellett, Salutatorian, Wayne High School

Feature image caption: Wayne High School’s graduating class of 2024. The valedictorian was Jake Peterson and the salutatorian was Lacey Ellett. Courtesy of Wayne High School.

Read Wayne’s salutatorian speech from a previous year at Effort by Mizuki Ito.