Despite heart surgery, Delta student graduates

Graduates Logan Williams, left, and Jenni Jones, right, listen Saturday as Dario Morales addresses the graduating class Saturday at Delta High School. “Through thick and thin, we stood united,” said Morales, who recovered from heart surgery to complete his senior year.

MONTROSE — One year ago, Delta resident Alma Morales was simultaneously rejoicing and sickened with worry. One of her two sons was graduating with the 2010 class of Delta High School. The other was undergoing heart surgery.

The surgery was successful, and 12 months later, Dario Morales stood upon the podium at Delta High School to be among his classmates in the 2011 graduating class.

Morales was one of 143 Panther graduates to receive diplomas Saturday. His older brother Isaac, who graduated a year earlier, watched with pride.

“I’m very proud of him,” Isaac said.

Morales was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, a condition in which there is an extra electrical pathway in the heart, causing it to beat rapidly at times.

Doctors also had to fix a hole in his heart, according to his mother.

Unconcerned about his medical history, Morales plans to study radiology at Mesa State College this fall and join his brother on campus.

“To me, that was the best. He got his health back and was back for his senior year,” Alma Morales said.

Morales stood with fellow graduates Logan Williams, Jenni Jones and Aaron Sakala to welcome parents and teachers to Saturday’s ceremony.

Through thick and thin, we stood united,” Morales told his fellow graduates. “As we go down our separate paths, we’ll never forget the good times and blasts.”

Delta High School teacher and coach Von Mitchell delivered the ceremony’s commencement address.

Mitchell told the audience that over the past three generations much has changed in the country.

He reminded parents that despite these changes, there are still useful lessons parents can hand down to their children.

“The environment is clearly different, but the kids aren’t,” Mitchell said.

He took time during his address to recognize nearly 15 graduates who will be joining the nation’s armed services.


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