Red ribbon

Sunday, October 21, 2001

Red Ribbon Week, a national campaign to educate communities regarding the dangers of drugs and alcohol, will begin Monday and run through Oct. 31.

The objective of Red Ribbon Week is to increase awareness of drugs and the harmful effects they have on the human body; thus assisting children in making well-informed decisions regarding drug use.

Red Ribbon Week began in 1986 in honor of drug enforcement agent Enrique "Kiki" Camerana. Camerana was assigned to a case in Mexico and was very close to identifying key members of a major drug cartel when he was discovered. He was then kidnapped, tortured and brutally murdered.

Angered by Camerana's death and the destruction caused by drugs and alcohol in America, the youth of Camerana's hometown began wearing red ribbons to honor their fallen hero. The National Family Partnership and affiliated organizations began to wear red ribbons as their symbol of their commitment to fight illegal use of drugs. Now the red ribbons are worn all across America for the same reason.

Oran elementary and middle schools have decided to educate children in their community about drugs by holding a number of activities for Red Ribbon Week. The Oran Eagle adopted the slogan "Drugs Don't Fly With Me" to be used throughout the week.

Some of the activities the Oran students will take part in include red ribbons being passed out to classrooms on Monday, and the National Guard providing an attack helicopter for children in kindergarten through fifth grade. The helicopter will land throughout the day for each class.

Leah Shrum of the Southeast. Regional Support Center will discuss the effects of alcohol with the fourth-grade class. The students will have the opportunity to "see" what it feels like to be intoxicated by trying on double vision goggles.

Brenda Freed of the Scott County Health Department will discuss healthy habits with kindergarten students.

On Tuesday students and faculty will be encouraged to wear red. Students in kindergarten through the fifth grade, accompanied by the middle school band and the high school cheerleaders, will "March Against Drugs" by marching around the block to symbolize their determination to trample the use of alcohol and drugs.

Cassie Worley of the support center will present a program on the dangers of smoking to the second grade.

On Wednesday students with a signed permission slip will get a red ribbon painted on their face by P.T.O. members.

Keith Middleton of the Medicap Pharmacy will discuss the rules of medicine with the first grade, and Larry Chasteen of the North Scott County Ambulance District will discuss alcohol- and drug-related accidents with the third grade.

On Thursday students in kindergarten through fifth grade will participate in a simultaneous balloon release to show their commitment to a drug-free life, and Randy Roddy of the Cape Girardeau Police Department will discuss the effects of alcohol with the fifth grade.

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