JOPLIN, Mo. — The Joplin High School class of 2011 spent the day reflecting on the past, present and future.
Nearly two dozen former students spent the morning touring the new high school for their ten year high school reunion.
Zachary White, 2011 Graduate, says, “I no longer think of my graduation day as the day i graduated, but really the day of the tornado.”
Nearly two dozen Joplin High School graduates spent Saturday morning touring the new high school.
They graduated on May 22, 2011 the day an e-f five tornado tore through Joplin destroying their former high school.
“It’s just so amazing just to see all this standing after a tragic accident. These kids have no idea how lucky they are to have all of this especially in the aftermath.”
One former student says her plans after graduation changed after the tornado hit.
Amber Cantu, 2011 graduate , says, “I was enrolled in college and I had to leave because we lost everything. So I was gone for a few years.”
The graduates are happy to see something beautiful come out of tragedy.
“Everything is just simply amazing. The kids here seem like they have a lot more opportunities in terms of growth and development. They’re able to learn trade skills that I was not able to learn when i went here.”
“I think it was a good new start for everybody to try and move past things. They got a lot of really cool opportunities at this new school.”
The high school has brick pavers engraved in the courtyard with every students name from the 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 class.
The district says its a way to remember the students who were not able to attend the new high school.
Dr. Kerry Sachetta, Assistant Superintendent for Operations Joplin Schools, says, “I hope they remember the good times they had in high school. Their friends, how much high school meant to them and help them get on their way.”