By Angelina Villarreal
High schools in west Texas joined together on Sept. to show their support and commemoration for Odessa by wearing the color yellow as a sign of hope in honor of Leilah Hernandez, a 15-year-old victim of the mass shooting in Odessa and Midland on Aug 31.
Hernandez and six other people died and 22 others were wounded after gunman Seth Aaron Ator went on a shooting spree in west Texas.
“We were remembering the young woman, Leilah Hernandez,” choir director Wendy Weeks said. “We were all planning to wear yellow to remember her, in honor of her, and in memory of her, and also as a symbol of hope.”
The color symbolizes “hope and those we have lost in our community.” The idea was proposed by Odessa High School and was further approved by Ector County ISD, called out to all west Texas schools to wear yellow.
“Since we’re both west Texas schools, and that we sometimes compete against each other, that in this difficult time, it was important for us to reach out and support them like that,” Weeks said.
A total of 2,128 mass shootings in the US have happened during recent years according to Sam Morris & Guardian US interactive team. Schools across the nation are working regularly to prepare the students for violent events.
“Schools are getting safer, but still when you get a body of people together we always have that fear, we’ll always have the possibilities of what could happen if somebody who is not mentally stable to be able to do that,” criminal justice teacher Les Bruce said. “We talk an amount to our classes about what we’re going to do if we hear gunfire, or we see someone with a gun and so I think we are getting better and better throughout AISD and I’m hoping that every school teacher and every school does the very same thing.”