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HUNTINGTON — Graduating seniors who live in the city or attend a high school in Huntington will be honored with a parade Friday ahead of their graduation ceremonies this summer.

The parade, organized by the city of Huntington, will begin at 1:30 p.m. at the 29th Street side of the St. Mary’s Center for Education parking lot, and seniors participating are asked to arrive no later than 1 p.m.

Jeremiah Maddox, a Huntington High School graduate, helped bring the idea forward to city leaders after seeing celebration parades pop up throughout the state during the COVID-19 crisis.

“I feel that it was a great thing that the city of Huntington got together and helped put this together for all the seniors,” Maddox said. “I feel like this showed all the seniors that if they work hard for something, they’re getting recognized for it, and I feel like the seniors will appreciate this greatly from their community members.”

Bryan Chambers, communications director for the city, said Mayor Steve Williams was enthusiastic about recognizing the local seniors and their accomplishments.

“Jeremiah contacted Mayor Williams a few weeks ago asking if the city would be interested in recognizing the Class of 2020 in some way. The mayor was honored to organize something memorable for all of the high school seniors in our community,” Chambers said. “The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly brought disappointment and frustration to what should be an otherwise joyful time in their lives. Mayor Williams was committed to giving them an opportunity to celebrate it, because they deserve it.”

The parade will travel west through Huntington and end up back at the St. Mary’s Center for Education at its conclusion. The Huntington Police Department will escort the vehicles through town and will ensure proper traffic control is in place.

Students participating are asked to decorate their vehicles, and to make sure those who do not have their own vehicle can still be celebrated, the Tri-State Transit Authority will provide a trolley for students to ride in through the parade.

Follow reporter Hanna Pennington via Twitter @hpennHD.

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