FORT KNOX, Ky. – The song "Pomp and Circumstance" takes about five minutes to play during an average High School graduation ceremony. It can play on repeat several times until every graduating senior has received their diploma. But graduations in the COVID-19 era are not average and are not typical.As the seniors from Fort Knox Middle High School prepared for the final step in their graduation journey on May 15, the road had not been typical as the FKMHS took a unique approach to the rite of passage.Principal Lonnie Gilmore and officials from the Department of Defense Education Activity Americas have found a way to circumvent and forego the traditional graduation format in order to observe guidance restrictions that are currently in place to protect the health and safety of all the participants.Over the past week, every aspect of the graduation ceremony has already been recorded separately, include the diploma presentations, the valedictorian speech and the commencement speech and it will culminate in all those pre-recorded elements coming together to create one massive video that will be played on the Fort Knox Middle High School Facebook page on Friday in place of a traditional graduation.In a school year filled with disarray, this alternative to the milestone may seem inconceivable, but for one Fort Knox senior, she chooses to see it another way.“My graduation year definitely caught myself and I’m sure every other senior off-guard. My heart goes out to every senior who looked forward to this special moment,” said Neely Turner, FKMHS senior. “My graduation experience was definitely unique, and not at all how I had envisioned it. However, I was still honored to have my diploma handed to me by my mom in front of my dad and siblings.”In this time of uncertainty, these young adults are getting their first taste of adulthood.“If I could change anything about this year, I would definitely change the pandemic from occurring, it’s heartbreaking to see our world change so quickly, however, I think I have become more resilient in that I was able to adapt so quickly,” said Turner.It wasn’t just the Fort Knox seniors who had to come to terms with this year’s plan for graduation, this milestone is just as important to the parents as it is for the graduating seniors.“It was hard, extremely hard for my daughter and many of her friends, because many of the young adults’ rites of passage occur during this timeframe,” said Colonel James Turner, 4th Cavalry Multi-Functional Training Brigade Commander and parent. “As graduates moving forward I know they can use this experience to write their own story, so one day they’ll look back and appreciate not only where they came from, but what they overcame to get there.”When looking back at the adversity she’d overcome these last few months, the young graduate had this advice for herself and her peers, “My message would be that these challenges will only make us stronger, more resilient,” said Turner. “It’s hard to see the positives right now, but the fact that we can make the most out of such a challenging time is phenomenal.”These seniors may never walk the halls of the high school as students again, but that won’t stop the school administration from sending them off in style. Prior to releasing the official graduation video on Facebook, there will be a parade for the students and their immediate family members carried out by convoy across the Fort Knox installation on the same day set to begin at 5 p.m.