Chipley senior has front yard graduation ceremony
Chipley High School seniors walked the stage on Thursday but after three members of senior Abbigale Rattin's family tested positive for COVID-19, they had to adjust their plans.
"Administration worked very well with me and said if I got a negative test I'd be able to walk with all my friends. But each day passed and we kept waiting," said Rattin.
Without the test result back in time, high school administration, school board members, as well as family and friends held a front yard graduation ceremony for Abbigale and presented her with her diploma.
Rattin said, "I remember standing at the door crying because there was a photographer there too. I told mom I didn't want to go outside, there were too many people, I can't do this."
Rattin and her family say they've been working to make the best of an unusual graduation year.
"We did some very untraditional things. We put up Christmas lights in May, we've put up all kinds of decorations. We put up a Christmas tree and decorated it with little graduation things. We just tried to make it fun however we could," said her mother, Crystal Page.
Abbigale was also mentioned during the official graduation ceremony, and she says many of her classmates have reached out to her in support.
She said, "To know that all these people in my class who I may have never heard from or talked to, extended support to me meant a lot. It just shows that in the face of difficult times, people come together and make things work."
Now an official graduate, Rattin and her family say despite the tough times they're staying positive and trying to remember when life gives you lemons, to make lemonade.
Rattin says her test came back the day after graduation and it was negative.