Riverhead High School’s Class of 2021 celebrated with a parade at the high school last night.
Dozens of cars decked out in blue and white lined up on North Griffing Avenue for the parade, drove along the back of the building where they were greeted by cheering family members, teachers and staff.
The Riverhead Fire Department used two ladder trucks to create an arch from which firefighters displayed a giant American flag. RFD brought two engines to salute the grads with sirens and lights as they pulled into the high school parking lot.
Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance Corps vehicles, sirens and lights flashing, were also on hand to greet the Class of 2021.
Shelly Walker, a fourth-grade teacher at Aquebogue Elementary School handed out Jolly Ranchers candies to the passing seniors and high school teacher Jill Tapper, gave them all Hershey’s chocolate kisses.
“My son was on the receiving end last year,” Walker said. “All my colleagues, all the kids came out and supported the graduates. I cried through the whole thing,” she said.
The drive-through tribute was initiated in 2020, in a year upended by the global coronavirus pandemic, after a video conference between a group of seniors and Riverhead High School Principal Sean O’Hara.
RiverheadLOCAL photos by Denise Civiletti
Support local journalism.
Now more than ever, the survival of quality local journalism depends on your support. Our community faces unprecedented economic disruption, and the future of many small businesses are under threat, including our own. It takes time and resources to provide this service. We are a small family-owned operation, and we will do everything in our power to keep it going. But today more than ever before, we will depend on your support to continue. Support RiverheadLOCAL today. You rely on us to stay informed and we depend on you to make our work possible.