By Wendy Gragg

Killeen Daily Herald

BELTON The Bell County Expo Center was crammed with Ellison High School spirit Saturday night as the audience, in a rainbow of greens, watched close to 400 senior Eagles graduate.

Family and friends came bearing greenwrapped gifts and multitudes of green balloons. The buzz and excitement in the stands rivaled that of the emerald-robed graduates themselves. The Ellison Class of 2005 made its grand entrance to wild applause, bringing their 12 years of school to a fine finale.

The seniors presented the school with a senior gift of an electronic marquee for the campus. Senior class officers Briana Loyd, Ivy Howard, Virlean Pink and Katie Anderson presented their graduating peers with a poem, taking them from freshman days to the legacy they left at the school this year.

Valedictorian Kellye Schiffner said the night belonged equally to the graduates and the overwhelmingly supportive fans in the audience.

They are crying for us and screaming for us, still finding ways to show their love and support, she said.

Schiffner also spoke about her faith and the teachers who helped her through. She also recognized members of the military and their contributions.

The men and women that just stood before you should be your heroes, she said.

Schiffner encouraged her peers to remember all the people who made their graduation possible when they take their grand walk across the stage.

Salutatorian Lacey Hood talked to her peers about the contradicting messages and over-used cliches they have all heard for the last four years.

Life goes that way and its contradictions wont stop here, she said.

She rehashed some of the high school experience, offering a special aside, which the crowd agreed with by hoops and hollers.

And teachers, just so you know, procrastination does work, she said.

As the auditorium brimmed with anticipation for the eagerly awaited list of names, Hood offered one last platitude, and a little levity.

In the words of Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, We did it!

Contact Wendy Gragg at

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