Staff Writer
CANEY BAY — Although the 2019-20 school year had to be cut short to protect students, teachers and families from the novel coronavirus, Brantley County seniors completed their year with a festive graduation ceremony Friday, held on Heron Field.
A perfect red Georgia sunset hovered over the tall evergreens surrounding the football field, as a welcome breeze helped those attending endure the stifling midsummer heat.
With the COVID-19 regulations still in order, the graduates were seated six feet apart on the field in rows starting at the east end zone. Only seven tickets per student were allowed, which made for an unusually small crowd of spectators.
And although the crowd was smaller, the enthusiasm and excitement were on high level, especially when Jacee Beth Thomas walked across the stage — under her own power — to receive her much-anticipated diploma.
Roars of excitement lengthened into an extended standing ovation for Miss Thomas, who has overcome many obstacles and survived many setbacks when doctors weren’t sure how her injuries would turn out.
She was critically injured May 24, 2016 when a CSX train struck her car at the Prescott Street crossing in the Schlatterville community near her home.

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