Fleming County High School’s graduation ceremony was emotional Saturday morning.
It came just one day after senior Buddy Morgan died following a serious crash weeks ago.
Morgan’s parents, Steven and Stephanie Morgan accepted their son’s diploma in his place Saturday.
“We’re incredibly happy that his parents were willing to come and accept his diploma for him to finish that walk for Buddy,” said Fleming County High School Principal Stephanie Emmons.
Morgan’s chair was left open at the ceremony. It was draped with his football and baseball jerseys.
Emmons said those jerseys bring back positive memories of seeing Morgan on the field.
“He also a couple of years ago was also in the band. He and his brother,” she said. “And so they would be out on the field and their football uniforms doing the Star-Spangled Banner with the band and then would go on to play the game, and I think that just kind of shows you what kind of dedication that he had to be the best kid that he could be.”
The senior class is still grieving, but they’re standing together to support each other and their classmate’s family. Emmons said their strong Christian faith and the Fleming County community are helping them through this moment.
“And seeing the crowd, the students, the family, the community members to stand up and cheer on Steven and Stephanie as they walked across the stage to receive buddies diploma shows you just what a wonderful community that we have and that we always support each other and we feel the pain that they feel during that moment too,” Emmons said.
Two other students were honored at the ceremony as well.
A seat was left open for Josh Perry, who died two years ago. And the class wore orange ribbons to support Matti Mers, who is battling Leukemia.