Pine River-Backus class of 2021

Class highlights

The Pine River-Backus High School class of 2021 had its senior class photo taken Thursday, June 3 after rehearsal. Submitted Photo
  • Number of graduates: 57
  • Class colors: Orange, blue and silver
  • Class flower: White rose
  • Class motto: “Our lives are before us, our past is behind us, but our memories are forever with us.” - Unknown author
  • Class song: “I Lived” by OneRepublic
  • Students joining the military: Brandon Bowen, Hunter Rice, Kade Schneider.

  • High honors graduates: Olivia Adkins, Zachary Burtard, Tessily Gregory, Rylie Hirschey, Hailey Jacobsen, Kyosuke Marcum, Halle Milham, Hanna Milham, Nolan Olivier.

  • Honors graduates: Molly Adkins, Brandon Bowen, Emma Cincoski, Alyssa Gravelle, Rylee Norman, Annabelle Toothman-Knapp, Ryan Tuchtenhagen, Gavin Wosmek.
  • Quote from Principal Chris Halverson: “The 2020-2021 Pine River-Backus graduating class is a talented group of young adults! They have overcome much adversity and grown as individuals in the process. The evidence shows they are strong communicators, creative problem solvers, and passionate humanitarians. Go Tigers!”

Top students

V ALEDICTORIAN : Rylie Hirschey

  • Parents: Josh and Nicole Hirschey
  • Extracurricular activities: Volleyball, basketball, student council, student government, National Honor Society, prom committee and STRIVE
  • Hobbies: I love spending time with Jesus, four wheeling, water sports, reading and spending time with family and friends!
  • Future plans: I will be attending the University of Northwestern-St. Paul this fall to major in nursing and minor in Bible! I will also be continuing my basketball career there, and hopefully my volleyball career as well.
  • Part-time work: This summer I will be working at White Birch Golf Course and Minne-Teepee Resort.
  • Memorable high school moment: One of my favorite sports memories is going to the state volleyball tournament in 2017. Another one of my favorite memories with my classmates was when our bus broke down on the way back from our Valley Fair field trip and we played board games on the playground for a couple hours.
  • Class rank: 1.


  • Parents: Kyle and Lori Adkins
  • Extracurricular activities: Basketball, volleyball, National Honor Society, STRIVE and jazz band
  • Hobbies: Horseback riding, hanging out with friends and enjoying nature!
  • Future plans: I plan to attend North Dakota State University or University of Northwestern-St. Paul to study biology.
  • Part-time work: Horse training. This summer, I plan to work at the Country Doc Veterinary Clinic as a veterinary assistant.
  • Memorable high school moment: Making memories with my team during summer basketball and volleyball.
  • Class rank: 1.


  • Parents: Angela Flategraff and Charles Milham
  • Extracurricular activities: Softball, dance, student council, National Honor Society and basketball managing.
  • Hobbies: In my free time, I enjoy boating, shopping, traveling and socializing with friends and family.
  • Future plans: In the fall I will be attending the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities to major in biology while taking prerequisites for medical school.
  • Part-time work: I am a dock attendant at C&C Boat Works in Crosslake.
  • Memorable high school moment: Covering an entire classroom, a student’s truck and other miscellaneous things with Post-it Notes before school hours.
  • Class Rank: 3.

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