JAY — Spruce Mountain Middle School students recently completed Red Ribbon Week, a time to campaign against drugs and to emphasize staying healthy and away from dangerous substances.

Catherine Siggens, a social worker at the school, said the nationwide event held since 1988, is meant to draw youths into the message.

Jay Police Department officers Richard Caton and Mike Majia regularly visit the school so students can get to know them.

Throughout the week, students wore red ribbons to show support for the message. It began three years after the death of U.S. Drug Enforcement Agent Enrique Camarena, who was killed by drug traffickers.

Youths signed a pledge stating they would remain drug-free, and dressed in a theme and followed a slogan each day of the week, such as Put a Cap on Drugs, for which children wore their favorite hats, Friends Help Friends Stay Drug Free, when children dressed as their friends, and Give Drugs the Boot, for which children wore their favorite boots to school.

Other slogans were: If You Aren’t Drug Free, You Can’t Hang With Me; It’s Easier to Stay Off Drugs Than to Get Off Drugs; and Stay in the Game! Stay Drug Free!, for which each child wore the school colors.

The week’s theme was A Healthy Me is Drug-Free.

Siggens said the messages presented will be followed up in conversations with each student.

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