It took place 10 weeks later than usual, and it was a decidedly scaled-down version—no music and no commencement speaker—but graduation for Leo High School’s Class of 2020 was still a memorable event.
With COVID restrictions depriving class members of much of their senior-year fun stuff, school administrators made the decision to push graduation back from its customary Mother’s Day date to Sunday, August 2 in the hope of giving the honorees a more appropriate sendoff.
The church at St. Margaret of Scotland was the venue, but COVID restrictions limited the size of the audience. So friends and family members of the graduates who did not have tickets to the ceremony joined Leo alums at Leo for a 42-car, police-escorted caravan from Leo to St. Margaret’s. The parade circled the church and drivers tooted their horns in celebration as the graduates marched in. The ceremony was streamed via Facebook Live for non-ticketholders gathered in the church parking lot.
Kevin Drumgoole was the Class of 2020 valedictorian. His twin brother Kaleb was the salutatorian. The Indiana State-bound brothers also dominated the academic awards, with Kevin earning the Tom and Mary Owens gold medal for mathematics and the Donald F. Flynn gold medal for history, while Kaleb claimed the Stafford L. Hood gold medal for English and the Dr. James Glos gold medal for foreign language.
Jammie Bolton was also a double award winner, earning the Dr. James Ahern gold medal for science and the Frank Considine gold medal for social justice. The Bishop John Gorman gold medal for religion went to David Williams.
Tobias Sample, winner of the Lawless Award as Player of the Year in the Chicago Catholic League Red Division and a two-time qualifier for the IHSA state track meet, won the William J. Koloseike gold medal for athletics. The Andrew J. McKenna gold medal for leadership went to Jordan Anderson, a three-sport athlete, honors graduate and member of the National Honor Society.
“It was kind of tough to pull this together given the restrictions, but I’m really glad we were able to give the boys a proper sendoff,” Principal Rawls said. “We faced a lot of challenges this year, and we were all disappointed that the seniors were deprived of so many things, so this was a good way to wrap it up for them. They were an exceptional class, and we’re going to remember.