For one of Long Beach High School’s 206 graduating seniors, May 18 marked his second graduation in less than four months.
Noah La’Cap waited his turn, and smiled as he crossed the stage and accepted his diploma.
In 2016, doctors had diagnosed La’Cap’s father, Alfred La’Cap, with cancer. Uncertain the elder La’Cap would make it to graduation day, a ceremony was held at the family’s home.
In February, Long Beach High Principal Larry Ramsey and other school officials held an anticipatory graduation ceremony in the La’Cap driveway.
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Family members rolled out Alfred La’Cap in his bed to see his son in cap and gown, accepting a diploma. It’s good he did, for he died before he could have seen the actual commencement exercises.
But the family said they believe the proud dad, a lifelong Catholic, was smiling down from heaven during the May 18 graduation ceremony bat the Coast Coliseum.
Long Beach High’s assistant principal, Talia Lock, also saw her twin sons graduate. Lock and her husband, Jeff, watched Aiden and Dalton Lock cross the stage and accept their diplomas.
Caleigh Traylor was this year’s valedictorian and Leah Salisbury was salutatorian.
Salisbury said graduating seniors have had to mature over the years.
“Just four short years ago, we stumbled into the front doors of Long Beach High School in a frenzied panic. We were lost in the hallways, fishing for the paper maps we received at orientation.
“But as the days dragged on and were filled with long nights of research papers, anatomy flash cards and chemistry formulas, the weeks flew by until there we were, running into senior year.
“This year, we were thrust into adulthood, making choices that will forever impact our futures. As a class, we have grown and matured throughout these 13 years of school.”
Long Beach High School
Class size: 207
Valedictorian: Caleigh Traylor, daughter of Shannon and Pete Traylor
Salutatorian: Leah Salisbury, daughter of Tammy and John Salisbury
Principal: Larry Ramsey
Quote: “With the wind in your sail, there’s no telling how far you’ll go.” — Valedictorian Caleigh Traylor