Christian Heritage School seniors Theresa Cutter, left, and Kristen Miller share a laugh Thursday at the school, just days before graduating as the entire Class of 2008 at CHS.

Photo by Mike Lawrence

Christian Heritage School seniors Theresa Cutter, left, and Kristen Miller share a laugh Thursday at the school, just days before graduating as the entire Class of 2008 at CHS.

In a class by themselves

Lifelong friends to share the stage as Christian Heritage School graduates


— Christian Heritage School's entire class of 2008 lives in one house.

And shares one bedroom.

CHS seniors Theresa Cutter and Kristen Miller, both 18, met in kindergarten, if not preschool. They were pen pals for years growing up. Last year, Miller moved from Colorado Springs to Cutter's house in Steamboat Springs, in time for the spring semester at CHS. Today, the close friends will share the stage as the school's two graduating seniors.

Cutter said the situation draws all kinds of reactions from people.

"Their mouth drops, and their eyes widen," Cutter said Thursday during some free moments at the school. "It's really funny."

"People ask how many (students) are in our class, and I say 'two,'" added Miller. "They say '200?' And I say 'no, just two.'"

That's quite a change from Pine Creek High School in Colorado Springs, where Miller was one of about 1,600 students - including about 450 in her class. She struggled at Pine Creek. When Miller's GPA dipped to 1.7, she and Cutter began to consider the idea of Miller moving to Steamboat.

They didn't think it would fly. They were wrong.

"When we spoke with our parents, they surprisingly considered it," Cutter said.

Three semesters later, Miller's GPA is 4.2 - current, not cumulative - thanks to hard work and advanced placement classes with weighted grades.

"I love it here," Miller said of CHS. "It's been an amazing change in my life."

She now is deciding between the University of Portland in Oregon and Western Washington University in Bellingham, Wash.

"One day, I want to be either a crime-scene investigator or a forensic anthropologist," Miller said.

She might see a familiar face in college.

Cutter already has decided on the University of Portland, where she plans to major in psychology and minor in social justice. The talented artist hopes to eventually do mission work in Africa, possibly involving art-oriented therapy and rehabilitation.

Wherever they travel, the two will be missed.

"I don't want them to leave," said Lisa-Marie Baker, youth minister for Holy Name Catholic Church, where Cutter and Miller are involved in the youth group. "They're both such amazing young women. They inspire me. I want to be a better person when I'm around them."

Sharing differences

Cutter sports Converse sneakers, listens to classic rock and loves musicals. Miller prefers high-heeled black boots, heavy metal and horror flicks.

They share loves for Mexican food, sushi and the movie "Garden State."

The friends recognize that maybe, after sharing bunk beds and classes and commutes, it could be time to be apart for a while.

"We need to separate for five years or so, then we'll get back together and share all of our stories," Miller said.

"We're going to be in each other's weddings," Cutter said with a laugh.

The two say of course spending so much time together has led to disagreements - about heavy metal music, for example - but they also feel prepared for living with a roommate in college.

"We get annoyed with each other, but we're pretty good at talking it out," Miller said.

"I think our friendship is stronger because of it," Cutter added.

Graduation starts at 3 p.m. today at the school.


portagetheyampa 8 years, 11 months ago

Nice story of two special girls. Good wishes to them as a bright future appears to be there for both!


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