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April 14 at 6:05 PM
Almost 65 years since graduating from Armstrong Technical High School in the District, Thelma Cummings and Clayton Roberts greeted each other Sunday with a warm hug as a ballroom in Prince George’s County began to fill up around them.
“Hey, a classmate!” Cummings, 82, exclaimed. “We went all the way through school together, since kindergarten.”
“All the way,” Roberts responded, “together!”
Around them, as soft jazz played in the background, fellow Armstrong alumni — some with canes and walkers, a few in wheelchairs — greeted each other with “You came!” and “You’re looking good!”
The almost 300 alumni and guests gathered at La Fontaine Bleue in Lanham to celebrate their alma mater, one of five D.C. high schools open to black students before the U.S. Supreme Court declared segregation to be unconstitutional in 1954.