Editor's Note: Newsday.com is catching up with former Long Island homecoming kings and queens to reflect on being named royalty and see what they are up to now. If you are a former Long Island high school homecoming king or queen and would like to participate, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
At Bay Shore High School’s homecoming parade of 1999, Adrian Ulloa and his friends piled into his 1990 Toyota pickup truck and took off down Main Street. They used to call it “Big Red.”
“Everybody was on my truck in the bed, and we rode down the whole street, right up to the high school,” he recalled. “I think we lost that game, if I’m not mistaken. But we had a great time; I really enjoyed my senior year.”
As a high schooler, Ulloa played lacrosse and football, and also wrestled.
“I did a little bit of everything,” he said with a laugh.
Ulloa received his royal title at the homecoming dance which was held right after the football game. He said that he didn't know what to expect.
“A lot of my friends told me that they voted for me,” he remembered. “But when they announced it, I was pretty surprised.”
He was crowned alongside homecoming queen Gillian Chapman, who was a good friend of his. After graduating in 2000, Ulloa went on to DeVry University in Long Island City and studied engineering.
“I’ve always had an inclination for technology,” he said. “Math was not my strong point but I learned to enjoy it, and physics tied it all together. I work in the healthcare industry and I service cardiology and ultrasound equipment. I’ve been able to travel the world doing what I do.”
Ulloa has worked for GE Healthcare since he graduated from DeVry in 2003. Some of his favorite places he’s traveled to include England, Paris and Bolivia. He said that while in Bolivia, he assisted with the installation of the country's first digital cardiac catheterization labratory. But for Ulloa, the most important milestone came when he became a father. His daughter, Liangela, is 8.
Ulloa, who lives in Hauppauge, said that although he said he’s reached all of his goals and more since his Bay Shore days, if he could go back, he’d tell himself to dream big.
“Don’t limit yourself to thinking you can’t do certain things,” he said.