Parents, students, staffers and the community may see some unusual sights around campus on May 22-23 as Sequim High School juniors and seniors experience the Grim Reaper “Every 53 Minutes” program.
The program is designed to inform students about the consequences of driving under the influence of alcohol and other drugs, riding with a driver who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or riding in an automobile without wearing a seatbelt. Grim Reaper, used across the United States since the early 1990s, is sponsored by the Clallam County DUI/Traffic Safety Task Force.
Local law enforcement and fire district personnel representatives will participate in the two-day event. A total of 21 students will be pulled from classes throughout the day on May 22 and will be deemed “victims” of drunk driving. They will don black robes and must remain silent for the remainder of the day. On Wednesday, May 22, after school at 3 p.m. there will be a photo session in front of the high school, with Grim Reaper “deceased” students, in corpse make-up and robes, arranged around a wrecked car (courtesy of Evergreen Collision).
The assembly is at 9 a.m. on Thursday, May 23, in the high school auditorium, and includes a dramatization with the “deceased” students. Keynote speaker George Fraser from Seattle will address the student audience of juniors and seniors; Fraser’s son was killed in a car crash in August 2000 as a result of his riding with a friend who had been drinking and driving.
SHS seniors Amanda Bennett and Mikayla Simonson are student coordinators for the event, assisted by teacher and leadership advisor Jennifer Van De Wege.