Auburn students going to Obama's inauguration

Daryn Slover/Sun Journal

Destiny Scott, left, Amber Bunnell, bottom, Ricky Black, second from left, Brianna Dyer and Tyler Smith are five of the 10 students from Franklin Alternative School in Auburn who are going to the inauguration of President Barack Obama on Monday. 

AUBURN — Destiny Scott voted for the first time in November, choosing Barack Obama.

On Monday she'll be in Washington, D.C., watching Obama take the oath of office.

“It's going to be amazing,” said Scott, 18. “It's a great opportunity. Something that will never be done again.”

She and nine other Franklin Alternative School students and three chaperons were offered tickets to the inauguration by U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, a Maine Democrat. By Monday, supporters had raised $3,500 for expenses.

“I like history. It's like I'm taking part in it,” said Amber Bunnell, 16, one of 10 students whose names were picked from a hat.

“It's awesome,” said Tyler Smith, 17. “It feels like an honor.”

Michaud's Chief of Staff Peter Chandler said his office gets lots of requests for inauguration tickets, but it only has 197 to give away.

A request from Franklin Alternative School history teacher Pamela Le stood out, Chandler said.

“The fact it was a group of young people, we factored that in," he said. "It's a chance for a group of kids to have a unique and exciting opportunity.”

It's special for anyone to be at a presidential inauguration, but for a group of students who attend an alternative school, “it's American history they'll never forget,” Chandler said. “Congressman Michaud wanted to make it happen, particularly for these kids.”

Le heard about U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree's office holding a lottery for inauguration tickets. She sent a letter saying why her students should go.

“We didn't win, but they wanted us to go so badly that they sent our names over to Michaud's office,” Le said.

During the presidential campaign, her students paid attention, talked about the debates, the candidates, the issues. “We had a mock election," Le said. "It was a spirited debate. We had kids register to vote for the first time.” Most of her students are Obama supporters, she said. “They want to see the man.”

She added, “They'll be a part of it. It'll be quite an experience for them.”

Taking her students to D.C. has been a dream of hers, Le said. “It's a place where history comes alive. They can touch it, feel it, see it.”

Before dawn Sunday, the group will hop in two mini-vans and drive all day, reaching Washington in the afternoon, early enough to take in some historical sights, Le said.

They've been advised to dress warmly because they'll be outside for hours, and to head to the White House at 9:30 a.m. The inauguration begins at noon. They'll go through security and go to their assigned spots, where they will stand. “We're right on the lawn in front of the pond,” said Franklin teacher and chaperon Kathy Saunders. The group will head home Monday afternoon.

Besides Scott, Bunnell and Smith, the students who are going are Tom Belanger, Brent Gagnon, Kyanna Edwards, Brianna Dyer, Zach Michaud, Brandan Cote and Rick Black.

Scott said she's going to take “a million pictures.” Bunnell said she looked at the Hilton online and it's impressive.

“I can't wait for the adventure,” she said.

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Richard Begin's picture

Franklin alternative

David cote

You Certainly must be proud of the Accomplishment that your Daughter achieved and I respect and commend her for her Service to the Community and the Nation.David what I wrote had no Bearing on your Daughter or what she did with her Life. If My remarks offended you

I will apologize to you and you alone.But I will not bend to pressure just because of what I wrote upsets people. You may rest assure that If I;m thinking it others are as well.

Now Samuel Chamberlain. You may report Me to the Folks at the Sun Journal. In so far as what I wrote, it was not Obscene or Profane, Or racist in Nature.If the Sun Jouranl Web team decides to censor Me or remove my posting that a would not matter much to me.

Now I have recently visited the so called No Bull Project, what I saw was a Contest to entice ages 13 to 18 to particapate in a contest and be involved with a Film Et Cetera. But I do not think that what I wrote fit the Mold of being a Bully.

What is on the Line here is I made a statement that you diagreed with and now you are turning up the heat to try to induce me to either Retract my remarks or Cower and Hide from threat of being reported.

Nice try but No Cigar

Not productive..

I am sorry to hear that you have experienced a misconception on what the Project is about. My comments were not meant to intimidate or scare you, but rather to inform you that the words you were saying - though you may feel wholeheartedly about - are hurting others. Making the statement "They look like Social Misfits, sorry to say but their appearence leaves much to be desired." was a completely uncalled for comment. You made "defamatory, abusive, or otherwise hateful comments" and "baseless personal attacks." All of which are against the policy of the Sun Journal. Your comments provided not constructive comments regarding the post.

Steve  Dosh's picture

Auburn students going to Obama's inauguration

. .Mainiacs , ƒlyday night Hawai'ian time •
" Destiny Scott, left, Amber Bunnell, bottom, Ricky Black, second from left, Brianna Dyer and Tyler Smith are five of the 10 students from Franklin Alternative School in Auburn who are going to the inauguration of President Barack Obama on Monday. "
Have fun guys and girls ! Dress warmly HAhaHAAHah! ( Dare i go ? Dirigo ! ;)
We'll look for you on TV Alo'ha from Pahoa + HI *<;-Q~ & Thanks Bonnie . .

 's picture


Enjoy the historic moment folks!!

Richard Begin's picture

Off to washington

These Students are from the Alternative school to the Normal school ' Edward Little'. They look like Social Misfits, sorry to say but their appearence leaves much to be desired.

When we look at the picture you have to consider what a future will look like when these Students take their place in Society

It is common knowledge that when one attends Franklin it is because these students either are unable to make the Grade or simply they do not adhere to the Rules that are required by Society.

I recall when a former Classmate of Mine from EL David Eretezian helped to create Franklin. I have never bought the argument that there was a need for Franklin. I understand that my comments will elicit many comments that will openly criticise me but that does not matter to me.

What does matter is conformity and playing by the Rules. With Education there is no Alternative.

Inapproperiate and completly uncalled for

Mr. Begin,

Your comments are frankly extremely inapproperiate and are uncalled for. Though these students attend an "alternative" high school, they are still attending school, they are working on developing their future in the best way that they can. The Franklin school is very well documented in the fact that it is able to keep students from a life of drugs, or destructive behaviors. These students are at the school for many different reasons, some for learning disabilities, and some for other reasons.

What scares me is not these students' frustration with"regular" school, but rather your comments. Your comments are degrading and provide little to no constructive comments.

Due to the nature of your comments I have reported your comments and your user directly to the Sun Journal's web team.

All I ask is that you think of who your comments are effecting before you make one.

Sam Chamberlain
Program Director
#NoBull Project

Steve  Dosh's picture

Dick Begin ? 20:20 hst ?

Dick Begin ? 20:20 hst ? Friday evening
ref ;" . ..their appearence leaves much to be desired. " They are there . You aren't . Post a picture . It's E Z to do , Hold up . We think we may have just found one of you --> <-- Take your pick Dick :)
/s , Dr. Dosh , Hawai'i • former employee

David  Cote's picture

Mr. Begin

Just to let you know... My "misfit" daughter attended Franklin and it's not your concern why kids, like my daughter attend, or have attended Franklin. You also have no right to prejudge people by appearance. Everyone has their own individual ways of expressing themselves through how they dress, speak and think. Getting back to my "misfit" daughter, she graduated from Franklin. That was almost eleven years ago. So what kind of "misfit" life has she led since? Try eight years regular Army stationed at Ft. Hood, rank of Platoon Sgt. with three tours of Iraq under her belt. She may be a misfit to you, pal...but she's a hero to me.

Steve  Dosh's picture

To Mr . David Cote, verified

To Mr . David Cote, verified user — Fri, 01/18/2013 - 15:57
Be Proud David . Verrry proud •
/s , Dr. Dosh , widower & father of four , including a daughter just like your's <- her shop and business *<;-Q~ shameless plug , Bonnie
Happy MLK jr. weekend too . Go Patriots !

 's picture

Thank you negative Nelly

What the heck is your problem? How about a nice "congrats". If I recall, you used to have your picture as your icon. This might be a classic case of the pot calling the kettle.

 's picture

i'd refuse

who wants to see the re-coronation of King Obama??????

Steve  Dosh's picture

Auburn students going to Obama's inauguration

Gordie ? i do •  Aloha from Pahoa hi 96778 u s a
/s Dr. Dosh
ref :


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