|Updated: 5/21/2012 10:34 am
||Published: 5/19/2012 8:08 pm
LITTLE ROCK, AR - For four long years, students at eStem Public Charter School have been the top class. Each year, the school grows more all leading up to the school's first graduation ceremony.
"I feel so successful right now," said graduate Marcel Moore.
"People are always asking, 'How can I get in? What do I do to get in?' Our kids love it, parents love it, staff loves it, it's a great place to be," said Biology Teacher Ruvenna Clayborn.
Since the school opened in 2008, the senior class has grown to more than 80 students.
80 students who've grown up together.
"These are your babies and that's how we treat them - like our babies," said Clayborn.
But on Saturday's first-ever graduation, one classmate is missing from the celebration.
"I feel so lost without him. I feel like I lost a brother," said Moore.
Anthony Goldsby died from leukemia in March.
He's the only student in eStem's first graduating class who didn't make it to graduation.
"He was one heck of a guy. He could be any body's best friend," said Moore.
Goldsby's death was a shock to the entire school. Moore remembers his last conversation with his friend vividly.
It was about today.
"We'll see you, bro. We'll see you when you walk across the stage," he recalled.
Saturday, Moore and his classmates crossed the stage without Goldsby but say he is just as much a part of this historic class as any other graduate.