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Anema, Van Vilet lead Ripon Christian High
RC val

For the better part of the past 13 years, Ripon Christian Schools was home to Taylor Anema and John Van Vliet.

Anema, who earned the top academic honor of valedictorian thanks to her 4.37 grade point average, had been there since kindergarten.

The salutatorian Van Vliet — he had a 4.1 GPA — started in RC as a first grader having attended kindergarten at his neighboring Escalon school.

Together, Anema and Van Vliet led the Class of 2019 during Friday's graduation ceremony.

"This past few weeks have been fun," said Taylor Anema, who is the daughter of Paul and Amy Anema of Ripon.

She's enjoyed the various activities and trips shared with her classmates. "It's brought all of us closer," said Anema, who will be attending Dordt University -- one of five from this year's graduating class going to the private Christian college in Sioux Center, Iowa -- to possibly major in Biology.

During the past four years at Ripon Christian, she was involved in volleyball and basketball. 

Anema also played soccer and took part in Knight Sounds along with a Bible study group and debate.

Van Vliet is the son of John and Kathy Van Vliet of Escalon.

He, too, played various sports including baseball, football, basketball and golf, but was fully committed to soccer in the past four years.

In addition, Van Vliet, who will be attending Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo -- he's looking to majoring in Bioresource & Agricultural Engineering -- was active in the local Future Farmers of America chapter and Robotics during his time at RC.

While those future plans are right around the corner, Van Vliet is interesting what's ahead of that.

"It'll be excited to see what happens to people later on. We all have this commitment (after high school), but many us will come back here," he said.