Farmington Students Remember Shooting Victims
— Instead of walking out to protest gun violence, students at Farmington’s Freshman Academy showed their support to students from Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School by creating a banner with comforting words, Bible scriptures and pictures.
“This is like a ‘walking up’ and showing our support,” said Maecy Garner, who spearheaded the project for her classmates. “If we walked out, Florida wouldn’t see how we are supporting them.”
Thousands of students nationwide walked out of school last week on March 14 in response to last month’s massacre of 17 students and adults. According to news accounts, about 3,000 protests were held nationwide and the protests were made in different ways. Some students walked out of school. Demonstrations were held in school gyms or football fields. Others descended on their state capitols.
Bob Echols, Freshman Academy principal, said Maecy talked to him about the walk out and his suggestion was for students to find something more supportive to do as a school community. He encouraged her to think about it and come back.
Two or three days later she returned with the idea to have students and teachers draw and write sayings or messages on poster boards and then put that together into one long banner to send to the school in Florida.
“She took it and ran with it,” Echols said.
School officials made sure everything written on the posters was appropriate to be sent to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Echols said the Freshman Academy had an active shooting assembly on March 14 and held a moment of silence to remember the students and adults who died one month ago on Feb. 14. Echols said he also read the names of the 17 victims.
“Most of these were freshmen, 14- and 15-yearolds,” Echols said. “I told the kids these students were your age.”
After the assembly and lunch, students in the Freshman Academy gathered outside for a group photo displaying the banner. The banner and group photo will be sent to the Florida school.
Echols said he was proud of the posters the students created.
“The kids did a great job. They really gave it some thought. Some went online and looked for supportive sayings to write. They did something a little more personal to show their support for the kids in Florida,” he said.
Aryanna Rathe also helped organize the project.
“We hope this is encouraging to them to keep pushing through this together,” Aryanna said.
Ninth-graders with the Farmington Freshman Academy display their banner that will be sent to students at Florida’s Majory Stoneman Douglas High School. The letters cannot be seen in the photo but they say #msdstrong. A former student shot and killed 17...
Some of the artwork and messages created on a banner sent to console and comfort students in Florida.