Otto-Eldred mantle recipients

Otto-Eldred Seniors Jacob Bell (left) and Andrew Sheeler (right) receive top honors for the Class of 2019.

The Otto-Eldred Junior/Senior High School will hold their graduation ceremony on Friday, May 31 at 7 pm in the high school auditorium. Fifty-three students will be graduating in the Class of 2019. Tickets are required for admittance into graduation.

Jacob Bell and Andrew Sheeler were announced as this year’s Mantle holders. Jacob Bell received the Career and Technical Arts Mantle. He is the son of Mr. Jeff Bell of Eldred and Ms. Angela Bell also of Eldred. Jacob plans to continue his education at the Pennsylvania College of Technology pursuing a degree as a Heavy Equipment Technician with Caterpillar Emphasis.

Andrew Sheeler received both the Academic and Industrial Arts Mantle. In the history of mantles being awarded at Otto-Eldred, which began in 1986, Andrew will be the first student to receive both mantles. Andrew is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Brian (Heather) Sheeler of Eldred. He will attend the Robert Morris University pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering.

This year’s guest speaker will be Mr. Nicholas LaBella. LaBella is one of five Otto-Eldred graduates from his family (parents Philip and Marjorie both Class of 1970, brother Philip Class of 1994, and sister Jennifer Class of 2000). Graduating as the Valedictorian of the Class of 1998, he received both academic and athletic scholarships to attend St. Bonaventure University where he majored in Mathematics and Secondary Education while playing four years of Division 1 baseball.

After graduating Magna Cum Laude, Mr. LaBella was hired to teach at Port Allegany High School where he taught and coached football, basketball and baseball. During his 11 years in Port Allegany, he returned to St. Bonaventure University to serve as an assistant baseball coach for eight years, completed his Master’s in Education at Gannon University, and completed his Principal Certification at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

In 2013, Mr. LaBella would return to teach mathematics at his Alma Mater for the next four years, also coaching varsity football. During his three years at the helm, the Terrors were back to back AML North Division Champions and LaBella was twice named the league’s Coach of the Year. He was also named Big 30 Coach of the Year.

For the last two years, Mr. LaBella has been the Fretz Middle School Assistant Principal in Bradford, where he resides with his wife of eight years, Nichole, and their two children, Ava and Gehrig.