Dear Editor,

This past weekend, Cocke County High School celebrated their 100th Commencement Ceremony. What a year! During this 100th year, the Centennial Committee has tried to create events that stirred both great high school memories as well as a vision for the future. The two biggest events, Tailgate of the Century and the 100th Day Celebration, simply highlighted all the good Cocke County High School has to offer. These events simply couldn’t have occurred without the help of far too many to name individually, but runs the gamut from public officials to school administration, press coverage from the Newport Plain Talk, WNPC and WLIK, alumni and students and the best community members.

The capstone project for this Centennial Celebration is a much needed auditorium renovation. With great pleasure, I am proud to say that the first phase of this renovation will be completed in the upcoming days, including ADA accessibility and stage improvements. The second and final stage will depend on further funding. The Committee wishes to express their deepest gratitude to all those that got behind (and hopefully will continue to support) the Class Challenge that encouraged all the classes of CCHS to sponsor a seat in the new auditorium. We were so touched by the Class of 1946 of which every surviving member made a contribution. Furthermore, it was extremely heartwarming to see the drive and enthusiasm of classes that didn’t even attend the current facility, especially the Class of 1961 which turned in $4,000 at Homecoming. Classes that did attend the present building also have gotten in the spirit. The Class of 1969 contributed over $5,350, the largest single class donation. Every class in the 80s have sponsored seats led by the Class of 1981 who have sponsored five seats and the Class of 2000, got into the swing of things and met their goal, and more, of $2000. Also, the Class of 2018 has raised over $1,000 to not only sponsor their seat, but also to sponsor the Class of 1939 in honor of Mr. Joe Huskey who attended the 100th day celebration.

No doubt for over 100 years, secondary education has changed in terms of curriculum, graduation requirements, etc. However, one thing has not changed. What was true then, and is true now, and will continue to be true, is that the success of our school is directly related to support of our community. Whether that support is financial or simply attending an extra-curricular event, we all have a part in our school’s greatness.

For years, Cocke County High School has provided a solid education, evident by the number of professionals in all walks of life including medical, industry, public servants and the military. This year has celebrated all this and will continue to do so. The theme for the Year was “Something to Crow About”, but I want to make sure you also note what is written in the banner “100 years and counting.” On behalf of the entire Centennial Committee, we thank all for the support and encouragement for this year and lets all work together for an even better next 100 years.

With deepest gratitude and appreciation,

Nancy Brawley, Chairperson, Cocke County High Centennial

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