By Jessica Trufant, The Patriot Ledger
Carmen Mariano recalled his parents telling him that he’s only as good as the company he keeps.
Looking out at the bright-eyed Archbishop Williams High School graduates, Mariano knew he was in good company. Fifty years after graduating from Archbishop Williams, Mariano stood on the auditorium stage for the last time as principal Thursday during the school’s 62nd commencement exercises.
“He made each and every one of us feel welcome here,” salutatorian Nicholas Neville said of Mariano in his address. “How fitting it is in the year of his retirement that it is us sending him off?”
Mariano, a Quincy native and Braintree resident, is retiring this year after spending five years as the school’s first president and two years as principal. But as both he and the members of the Class of 2014 prepared to depart, Mariano reminded the graduates that they will always be part of the Archbishop Williams family, and he assured them that he will be there should they need him.
“I will help you shine in any circumstance. Just ask. Just ask. Just ask,” he said. “I will have your back. I will have your front. If you need me, I’ll be by your side. Just ask.”
Valedictorian Ryan Wallace, who will attend Harvard University in the fall, said that by following his dreams, Mariano brought “tremendous happiness” to both himself and the school’s students.
Wallace said a member of the graduating class could go on to solve a world problem if he or she has the courage. Quoting physicist Marie Curie, he said, “Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.”
“The power to improve the world lies in our hands,” Wallace said, “as long as we don’t let fear dissuade us.”
ABINGTON – Katelyn Barry, Marisa Gervasi, Stephen Jenner, Victoria McIntyre.
BRAINTREE – Christopher Allen, Heather Banks, Shannon Connolly, Brendan Costello, Garrett Foley, Nhan Huýnh, Xueheng Liu, Conor Mahon, Liam Mansfield, Bridget McQuillan, James Nazzaro, Nicholas Neville, Daniel Pelagio, Michael Price, Joseph Tulip, Jocelyn Wilbur, Huimin Yang, Zhi Zhou.
BRIDGEWATER – Dwyght Pena.
BROCKTON – Leah Spencer.
CANTON– Stephanie Hunter.
BOSTON – Kerri Bemis, Aidan Browne, Mary Collins-Matheny, Bridget Devine, Shawn Fitzpatrick, Daniel Kalayjian, Meghan Keough, Jessica Maguire, Mayilee Mercedes, Sean Morgan, Hieu Nguyen, Meghan O'Neil, Matthew Vilme.
BOURNE – Michael Sorenti.
EAST BRIDGEWATER – Ashley Dallaire, Kenneth Lofstrom, Benjamin Hamilton.
FALMOUTH– Michael Jessman.
EASTON – Shay Maloney.
HANOVER– Jacqueline Bloomer, Kyle Compton, Olivia Conrad, Celine El Abboud, Thomas Foley, Collin Higgins, Bryan Turner.
HOLBROOK – Jamie Carr, Ryan Crooker, Tabitha Davidson, Dylan O'Brien, Ryan Wallace.
HULL – Daniela Marchione.
KINGSTON – Samantha Forde. Erin Kearns, Richard Smeloff, Jr.
LAKEVILLE– Justin Mancovsky.
MARSHFIELD– Hugh Healey, Liam Rose.
MILLIS – Joseph Lane.
MILTON – Courtney Burke. Steven Butts, Liam Canty, Michael Davis, Yun Hu, Kevin McBrearty.
NORWELL – Christopher Kardok.
PEMBROKE– Michelle Monet.
PLYMOUTH– Caroline Aborn, Adam Ferreira, Colin Kendall, Jonathan Mobilia, Anna Sweeney.
QUINCY – Julie Bloomer, Julie Connell, Kali Cormican, John Dunford, Nicholas Frasso, Steven Gilbert, Kerry Hanlon, Kennedy Hannon, Erin Koehler, Meghan MacDonald, Matthew Maki, Liam McClelland, Bryan McCormack, Emma McDonnell, Sinead McGrath, Molly Meehan, Jessica Muscato, Renée Patten, Edward Riley, Michaelle Schuelke, Taylor Stewart, Jenna Tobin.
RANDOLPH – Ashraf Blell, Izabela Eljaszuk, Brian Gallagher, Matthew Gallagher, Justin Haskell, Bridget Higgins, Cameron Josey, Laureen LaFond, Carla Lormeus, Kristen Manning, Mohini Patel, Kylan Philbert-Richardson, Erika Pradieu, Raju Vaswani.
RAYNHAM – Nicholas Menzel, Cameron Pedersen.
ROCKLAND – Ann Borges, Ryan Dunn, Caitlin Kearney, Miranda Murphy, Jennie Walker.
SCITUATE – Richard McAllister.
STOUGHTON – Olivia Mahidashti.
WEST BRIDGEWATER – Mark Mascheri.
WEYMOUTH– John Cameron, Meaghan Carnell, Erin Crowley, Jillian Delaney, Thomas Dillon, Emily Frazer-Tully, Steven Gustafson, Rachel Igo, Brendan Keenan, Patrick Lacey, William Matthews, Amelia McCaffery, Maegan O'Leary, Olivia Osgood, Brian Pumphret, Julia Pumphrey, Michael Putnam, Steven Righini, F. Rioles, Jade Stern, Fallon Walsh.