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No prom? For this teen, it’s a trifecta of missed milestones

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In this April 3, 2020 photo, Annette Reynolds, right, puts the finishing touches on her daughter Amanda’s prom gown as she poses for a photo outside their home in Largo, Fla. The Florida teen recently marked her 18th birthday at home, obeying state guidelines and social-distancing rules, by making a cake with her mother and not celebrating with friends as she had planned. Amanda Reynolds is like all of these young people, a case study in what is being lost by those who, in spring 2020, are on the cusp of adulthood and losing many of their expected rites of passage. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — For decades, the prom has represented a cornerstone of American teenage life. Shopping for the dress, finding a date, posing for photos, dancing awkwardly in a low-lit gym. It’s all enshrined in movies, books, television and the memories of generations of Americans.

Combine prom with graduation and an 18th birthday. It’s a trifecta of milestones.

But now, for millions of Class of 2020 teenagers living through the coronavirus outbreak, these coming-of-age moments look and feel vastly different. They’re doing the best they can to reschedule, to wing it, and to celebrate virtually with technology.

But the truth is this generation will never regain these moments. 

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