Tomorrow, on December 13, everyone in the Arapahoe community is invited to wear purple during our Purple Out Day. The reason we wear purple is to honor Claire Davis, the victim of the shooting at Arapahoe four years ago.
Natalie Pramenko, the school principal said, “We do it so that we don’t ever forget what happened, and especially to honor Claire Davis.”
Davis’ favorite color was purple but, at Arapahoe, it has also come to mean much more.
English teacher and Sources of Strength administrator, Maura Moritz, said “We wear black and gold all the time to show our warrior pride but, December 13 is definitely a different day at Arapahoe so, to use purple, not only to honor Claire but, also to show our strength and unity is really important.”
When asked about its significance to the community, Moritz says “The last three years, we wore purple to honor Claire. I think that the school and as a community, we are trying to move on from recognizing December 13 as a tragic event at Arapahoe and more towards a day of strength and unity because we were able to be stronger after that happened four years ago.”
Pramenko agrees by saying “I think it creates a sense of unity amongst the Arapahoe community. It reminds people to be kind and respect each other. It is important to meet people where they are and to not judge them.”
The Purple Out aims to have as many participants as possible, for it does much more than honor Claire Davis.
“We just want as many people as possible to recognize that, regardless of whatever we are facing, we are all in this together and it’s just a day, not only to show our Arapahoe pride but, to show pride beyond just what it means to be a warrior,” said Moritz.
The Purple Out Day is part of the “Deliberate Acts of Love and Kindness”, which has been taken over by Sources Strength. Although the theme of this month for Sources of Strength is generosity, the program reaches out further than that.
“ I don’t think it really applies to one specific thing, I think it’s just the whole message of Sources of Strength. Let’s take care of one another and look out for one another,” said Moritz.
Since the Purple Out Day remind us to bring support to each other, it is important that we remember who might need it most. Since the shooting happened four years prior, only a small portion of the communities’ population was actually in the building the day of the event. Most of these people happen to be staff members.
“Although we recognize that everybody in the building had an experience that day (whether they were in middle school or elementary school, everybody… something happened that day), be gentle with each other and know that some of the adults in the building may be a little on edge on that day,” said Moritz.
If you are not able to wear purple on December 13, purple bracelets will also be handed out during the third hour in class. If you do not have a third-hour class, members of Sources of Strength will also be handing them out in the cafeteria and library. They invite the warriors to always take care of one another.