By Mary O’KEEFE
Red Ribbon Week was recognized throughout Crescenta Valley schools with ribbons tied onto trees and red cups shoved into wire fences spelling out “Red Ribbon.”
Schools gave out red wristbands and spent some extra time talking about the positives of leading a healthy life as opposed to making the wrong choices with drugs, alcohol and tobacco.
Crescenta Valley High School is having an assembly today, Thursday, where students will hear from young people who had made bad choices.
During the week the school had powerful demonstrations including a display of diseased lungs from a smoker. Students hooked bellows up to the lungs that forced air into the organ, showing how air struggles through spotted smoker’s lungs and how easily it travels through a healthy lung.
Red Ribbon is a nationally recognized program that was born from the murder of Drug Enforcement Agent Enrique Camarena. The agent was working undercover in Mexico and had made it difficult for the drug cartels. One day in February 1985 on his way to meet his wife for lunch, men jumped out of a vehicle and kidnapped him. In another part of the city his pilot Alfredo Zvala-Avelar was also kidnapped. The two were tortured and killed. Camarena’s family and friends did not want him to be forgotten. They began to form Camarena Clubs and asked kids to take an oath not to use drugs. Those clubs grew into what is known today as Red Ribbon Week.