APS honors graduates killed while serving their country

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – As we celebrate the Fourth of July this weekend, Albuquerque Public Schools is paying tribute to students who made the ultimate sacrifice.

At the start of APS board meetings for the past ten years, the district plays a slideshow showing faces of the fallen APS graduates who laid their lives on the line in recent wars.

“It’s a very emotional reminder that there are selfless individuals in this country who made the choice to go out and defend our freedoms,” said Monica Armenta, executive director of communications for APS.

APS believes it’s our duty to not only thank them, but to think of them.

Major Bill Barker is APS’ military instructor. “I’ve been at the district for several years, and I knew many of those young men personally,” Barker said.

“I think it’s important for the citizens of Albuquerque to realize that there are other citizens from our school that are stepping forward to defend the country and the American way of life,” said Barker.

“That’s the ultimate sacrifice,” said Russ Thompson, an eighth grade social studies teacher at Desert Ridge Middle School, who reminds students about sacrifices made by their fellow alumni.

“You can debate the issues all you want, but the point is, they’re fighting for our freedom,” said Thompson.

APS plans to grow the slideshow.

“We’ve inviting anyone who has someone who served, has served, has lost their life or is currently in the military to tell their story to be able to give the rest of us an opportunity to say thank you to those men and women who served so proudly,” Armenta said.

Pictures can be submitted through APS’ Facebook page.

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