Buddies, neighbors rejoice Midland’s LaRue’s commencement with drive-by


PEO, neighbors, household assist mark milestone

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On Friday, Might 1, Gibson Road turned a stroll of honor for Mary Jo LaRue to mark her commencement from Michigan State College. The formal commencement ceremony was canceled as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, however LaRue was in a position to have her personal collection of celebrations due to the efforts of her buddies, household and neighbors.

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LaRue obtained her Grasp of Social Work from Michigan State College with plans to work in hospice care. She had a complicated standing, which meant it took her solely a yr as a substitute of two to finish her grasp’s diploma.

“I referred to as it educational boot camp,” LaRue stated. “This yr was intense.”

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To assist pay for her tuition, she earned over 20 educational scholarships which lined her undergrad and graduate levels, three of which got by PEO. LaRue has been a member of PEO Chapter CE in Midland since January 2019, however was an lively participant earlier than her initiation, donating gadgets for the chapter’s storage gross sales which in flip fund scholarships. Her fellow members – referred to as sisters – have been thrilled to listen to of her accomplishments, although saddened she could not rejoice them within the conventional sense.

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“She’s actually labored onerous,” stated Cheryl Hunt, of Midland.


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“We simply need to honor her and let her know that her Chapter CE sisters love her,” stated Chapter President Mary Shaughnessy.

Simply earlier than 1 p.m. Shaughnessy delivered do-it-yourself indicators to embellish LaRue’s entrance yard. On the hour, LaRue appeared on the entrance garden of her house, wearing her cap, robe and hood and sporting an MSU face masks, below the pretense of taking commencement footage. Seconds later, the air was full of the sound of horns as LaRue’s PEO sisters lined as much as categorical their felicitations. A minimum of 14 vehicles lined up alongside Gibson Road, ceasing their honking in order that strains of “Pomp and Circumstance,” carried out by John and Geri Anderson, could possibly be heard.

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“This was an superior shock, Mary. Thanks a lot,” LaRue stated, turning to Shaughnessy, standing in her driveway.

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The parade of PEO sisters was the primary of three celebrations to honor LaRue. Neighbors organized for an additional shock procession an hour later. LaRue’s household organized a 3rd occasion which occurred later that day.

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Mike Buller, one in every of LaRue’s neighbors, defined that the neighborhood was discussing internet hosting their very own drive by once they heard about PEO’s occasion. They coordinated with PEO to verify their instances did not overlap.


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“It is such a momentous event in her life,” stated Mike Buller of Midland.