Graduated students now in the military showcased at MHS – Web Exclusive

Kris Ogungbemi | Staff Writer

The halls of Mason High School are packed with advertisements and display cases showcasing the opportunities available to students. The display case in the hallway between A1 and the lobby, however, houses a topic much solemn. The case holds pictures of recent MHS graduates that have chosen to enroll in the military after graduating from high school. Currently, the case holds 27 pictures of both men and women ranging from private to sergeant, from all five branches of the armed forces the Navy, Army, Air Force, Marine and Coast Guard. Tina Izurieta, MHS media center aide, has taken charge of keeping up with the case.According to Izurieta, the case was started by Dr. Dave Allen’s administration, and she has chosen to manage its growth for personal reasons that connect her with the subjects of the display.

“The case came about with Dr. Allen; I guess he knew we had several alumni in the military,” Izurieta said. “My son is in the Coast Guard Academy, [and] I know a lot of the kids that are in the military. A lot of my son’s friends are in it and some of them graduated with my daughter.”

Izurieta said that parents of the students in the military and some of the students themselves have shown appreciation for the school’s effort to honor these civil servants.

“It means a lot to them that we, as a school [and] a district, are honoring them, because a lot of them are in harm’s way right now,” Izurieta said. “I’ve even had some parents come up and thank me.”

Lynn McQuiniff, MHS cafeteria aide, said she has a son in the armed forces and appreciates the high school’s effort to show appreciation.

“I’m afraid for [the parents of the students in the military]. It’s a worry for parents, so I think [the display case] is good,” McQuiniff said. “Mason kids should know who of their peers serves in the military.”

Ideally, according to McQuiniff, the visual respect paid to these graduates by the display case should have a positive effect on current Mason students.

“I think [the display case] should make [Mason students] stop and think about the choices they make and how they affect others,” McQuiniff said. “I mean, [the choice the] military kids [have made] affects all of us.”

Izurieta said that she hopes that the display case will have a lasting effect on the population of students at MHS.

“I hope [the display case will] have an impact,” Izurieta said. “It’s good that we can put some things up to honor men and women who are serving.”