ELKVIEW, WV (WOWK) — Many students in our region are getting their high school diplomas this week. But seniors at one school will graduate with a shared experience like no other.

The 2016 flood brought students at Herbert Hoover High School a little closer together even during a global pandemic.

Construction is underway right now on a new Herbert Hoover High School building that will replace the one that was destroyed in the 2016 flood. But this year, students are marking a major milestone.

“We’ve never lost our stride even though we’ve been in this situation,” explained student-athlete and senior Ryan Beasley.

Students in the Hoover graduating class of 2022 have spent their entire high school career in portable units outside of Elkview Middle School.

“We might have cold hallways in the winter and we might not have lockers for our backpacks but we really didn’t make excuses,” said Senior Class President Michael Taylor. “I mean we tried our best not to let our situation get the best of us and I think we did a really good job of that.”

Some students lost their homes and belongings in the flood and they leaned on one another to overcome.

The new high school won’t be complete until sometime in 2023 but administrators say the legacy these students have built by showing perseverance and grace will carry on to future classes of Huskeys.

“When you get knocked down you either stay down or you get back up. These kids got back up,” said Principal Mike Kelley. “Because of them and pretty much every class since 2016 they have kept this a viable school. They’ve kept it one of the best schools in the state. They didn’t make excuses. Because of that when we move into that new school every kid that comes after that is going to have things better because they did their job.”

Herbert Hoover students are set to graduate this Thursday night.