Attack doesn’t keep teen from diploma

Mallory Haulman graduated from Montrose High School on Sunday with fond memories of playing three sports, earning good grades and bonding with members of her tight-knit class.

The day of her “accident,” as she refers to it, stands in sharp contrast to the rest of her high school experience.

In November 2008, a 14-year- old boy she did not know approached Haulman with a knife in one of the high school’s hallways and slashed her neck. The incident happened on a Tuesday, and she returned to school the next Monday.

“I was kind of nervous (to return to school) because I wasn’t scared, but I didn’t know how other people would react,” Haulman said. “They were really nice about it.”

Haulman said her throat has healed, and the incident didn’t affect her grades or her passion for softball, swimming and track.

She wants to spend the summer taking trips and spending time with family before moving to Grand Junction and enrolling in Mesa State College this fall.

Haulman won a $1,000 scholarship to attend the college. The scholarship is one awarded by staff each year to a Montrose High student nominated by a staff member and then selected by the staff.

School employees surprised Haulman with the scholarship at a faculty meeting this spring.

“I haven’t gotten very many scholarships, so it was nice. I wasn’t expecting to get it,” Haulman said.

Haulman was one of 231 students to receive a diploma at Sunday’s commencement ceremony.

A German exchange student earned a certificate of completion.

The school also awarded an honorary diploma this year to 95-year-old Russell William Cook. Cook received his diploma Thursday because he could not be at Sunday’s ceremony.

Montrose High Principal James Barnhill said Cook earned the accolade through real-world experience after he dropped out of high school to fight in World War II.

The high school had eight valedictorians this year: Kyle Ayer; Rebecca Beshoar; Tyler Betz; Dillon Card; Sarah DeJulio; Sydney Sullinger; Monica Thurston; and Jessica Vickers. Each valedictorian offered a short speech.

Retired Montrose High teacher and 2005 Colorado Teacher of the Year Kathy Heavers offered the keynote address.

Heavers told students to dream big and noted that Montrose High graduates have gone all over the world doing interesting things, from working for UNICEF in Africa to filming the first season of ‘Survivor.’

“The sky’s the limit. Don’t sell yourself short,” she said.


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