Final Graduation for Biggers-Reyno High School

MAY 16, 2006 -- POSTED AT 12:00 A.M. CDT

BIGGERS, AR -- High school graduation is a special time that represents a turning point in life, but Tuesday night's graduation ceremony at Biggers-Reyno meant so much more, not only to the Class of 2006, but to all those who ever attended the school since 1887.

"The list goes on and on of the memories that I have here at Biggers-Reyno High School, and I'm sure everybody else does too. Those will be cherished for a long, long time," says Ralph Morrow, Jr., the high school principal at Biggers-Reyno.

After 2005, the state mandated that Biggers-Reyno consolidate with the Corning School District and close their doors. As expected, that decision that came with much emotion.

"The patrons have always been responsive to the needs and it was the center of the community and therefore it's like tearing people's hearts out when they know they're not going to have the school to be a part of the community in the future," says John Edington, the school superintendent.

"I feel privileged to have gone to school here for the past 13 years and I love it, and I'm sad to see it go," says Lincoln Carlton, the valedictorian for the Biggers-Reyno graduating class.

The emotion felt at the graduation ceremony was definitely bittersweet, but Principal Morrow said he is hopeful for the future of the class of 2006, as well as for the rest of the Biggers-Reyno community.

"As fast as for the rest of us who have taught in this school system and worked in this community, it's a sad time for us because our school has been consolidated, but at the same time, we look forward to building new dreams, building new memories, making new friendships, and moving on," says Ralph Morrow, Biggers-Reyno High School Principal.

Regardless, the 109 year old school of Biggers-Reyno is closing its doors and starting a new chapter. A new beginning with much emotion and anticipation.

"We carry with us what we call Buffalo pride, and wherever our students choose to go, we know that they'll carry that pride over to their other school," says Lincoln Carlton, a graduate of the last Biggers-Reyno class.