Sparks mural gives hope to students after last year's shooting

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Updated: 5/01 11:22 pm
SPARKS, Nev. (MyNews4.com & KRNV) -- Six months ago, the Sparks community became part of a growing statistic involving kids and guns in schools.

On October 21, a student at Sparks Middle School changed the lives of three families directly, and impacted all us in some way. Through one of the worst days in the lives of many, we saw the very best in many more.

Former Sparks Middle School student Mason Fisher, with the help of current students, is making sure the lasting image of that day is a story of hope.

A coat of paint can fix just about anything.

"It started out being an Eagle Scout project," said Fisher.

With a little vision and a lot of help, Fisher is mending broken hearts. "It represents the students were a part of it and that it wasn't just me working on it, but the whole school is involved."

Fisher, like most of us, watched in shock after a Sparks Middle School student brought a gun to campus, and shot two classmates before killing a teacher, Michael Landsberry, and ultimately turned the gun on himself. So, when it came time for this Life Scout and alumni to tackle his Eagle Scout project...

"We chose the idea of a sunrise because it goes hope to the students here."

...the project took on a life of its own.

"Mason's goal was to have every child participate in our school," said Principal Stacy Ting-Senini. "All of our kids handprints are on the painting in some place, even our three- and four-year-olds."

"It's like they're literally leaving a print on the school," added Fisher.

The first images students think about when October 21, 2013 is mentioned will likely always be awful. But thanks to the efforts of Mason and hundreds more, this mural will hopefully serve as the lasting image in their minds. "The tragedy that happened here, they're all still going to be thinking about it, but I guess it's supposed to be a positive message for them to stay hopeful."

"A new beginning," Ting-Senini said. "And that's what the past few months has been for us is a new beginning and new start."

The finishing touches on the mural should be complete on Friday.
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