WINK, Texas (KETK) – Reaching out through high school football may be one of the most “Texas” ways to respond to a tragedy.
Certainly the Wink-Loving Independent School District has chosen the state’s most popular pastime as its way of helping and supporting the victims of the recent mass shooting in nearby Odessa.
In a Facebook post Friday, Wink-Loving ISD said it was not charging for admission to high school football games this year. Instead, the post urged people attending the games to make a donation to the Odessa Police Department, one of whose officers – along with an officer from Midland PD and a DPS trooper – was injured in the shooting.
The August 31 shooting rampage killed 7 and injured 22. The trauma inflicted on Midland-Odessa in particular and Texas in general was only heightened by the fact that it occurred less than a month after the mass shooting in El Paso, where 22 people died and 24 were injured.
To help alleviate that trauma, WLISD set up donation boxes at stadium entrances and urged all attending games to wear yellow ribbons.
For all the hurt suffered so recently, Texas knows one way to heal – football. The Friday night celebration pulls together communities across the state, and offers a way for one community to reach out to another.
Now Wink is using that celebration to show its neighbors in Odessa that no matter which team we root for, we really are all in this