(Karval, CO) -- After much windshield time if you drive to Lincoln county, you'll find farmers and ranchers, teachers and preachers and you'll also find a tiny school that really supports their graduating class, even when it is ONE student.
Maggie Reid graduated Sunday May 15th from Karval schools where she attended Kindergarten through 12th grade. But she was the only student in the class of 2022. Smaller class sizes aren't unique to small communities as populations in small towns are getting even smaller. Despite the school having just one student graduating, a big celebration was held as if there were 300. Maggie's family not only attended to support her that day but her grandmother led the band and her aunt, Lacey Taylor, was the keynote speaker. Lacey is a state extension officer and gave her some sage advice, half formal, half informal, but the speech brought tears. (make sure to watch the video I included in the story below, because for a tiny band, they were awesome!)
If you've ever been to a small town and noticed the strength of the Septuagenarian ranchers fighting with a bad bull, fighting with the weather, fighting with a broken fence, fighting the wind and the latest legislative challenges you'll notice, they don't break often. This day was different. The town of Karval has struggled to keep their community growing so they really rally behind supporting the youth. Watching this little girl, not so little anymore walking down to accept her diploma was much too much for some. They keep hope that there will indeed be more kids from their community to watch. Even Maggie's little brother Shane allowed a few tears to flow as she finished her speech and stepped off stage to hug him. I didn't capture this moment because we just watched. Sometimes, not everything needs to be documented. I do have some other photos on here, I hope you like them.
After the graduation the town stayed for a reception and later joined the family on their ranch, the Reid Cattle Company, for dinner, fellowship and good times.
Maggie plans to attend college and pursue a music degree to teach. Hopes are that students like Maggie will return to small towns to keep the communities thriving and enjoying their way of life.
Full disclosure moment now, if you've read this far you're probably wondering why my tone was more casual on this story. Well, Maggie is my niece. Thank you for indulging me to tell this story. After having grown up in a big city, I'm still in awe of what small towns can do and do still do for their communities. It is amazing!
But, you probably already knew that, didn't you?