Local News

Graduation Bittersweet For Wakefield Seniors

Posted June 10, 2006 8:22 a.m. EDT

— Seniors across Wake County are celebrating their high school graduation. However, emotions at one of Saturday's ceremonies were mixed.

The Wakefield High Class of 2006 will never forget four names: Baker Wood, Anthony Bostic Steven George, and Timothy Steinberg. The four teens were killed in a car crash in March. They would have graduated with their classmates on Saturday.

"There are always mixed feelings at times like this," said Wakefield High principal Stephen Takacs. "All these people are so happy that their kids are graduating, but in the back of your mind, there's the lingering thought that they should be with us."

The four boys died when their car -- estimated to be traveling at a speed of around 105 mph -- flew off a highway bridge and crashed 58 feet onto the ground. Authorities said that alcohol was involved in the crash.

To honor her friends and fallen classmates, Tierney Farrell dug deep into her creative soul.

"I wanted to draw something that was special to me and that would be special to a lot of people at the school, and that would be a good way to remember them," said Farrell.

Every student received a copy of Farrell's portrait of the teens. The artwork affected graduates in different ways.

"I just remember the fun times that we had in science class, just being goofballs and just horsing around, " said Wakefield graduate Ryan Dean.

"We're lucky to be alive," said another graduate. "It can happen to anybody."

The four boys were honored along with another student, Ashley Rigsby, during a moment of silence in the graduation ceremony. Rigsby, who was also a member of the Class of 2006, died in a separate car crash earlier this year.