FAIRFIELD — Armijo High School’s Sober Grad Night committee was dealt a blow over the weekend as the six storage sheds used by the group were burglarized.
On Monday afternoon, Scott and Lori Russell, who have worked with Sober Grad for more than a decade, and Audrey Jacques, Sober Grad Night co-chairwoman, surveyed the damage in the hardest-hit shed.
Burglars left it a mess, in addition to stealing about $2,000 in prizes that ranged from electronics to desk lamps. Also gone were a cotton candy machine, microwave and toaster oven used at the event.
The committee usually gives out about $5,000 worth of prizes on Sober Grad Nite.
Other outbuildings at the school were also ransacked.
“These buildings have been in the parking lot for 20 years,” said Lori Russell. “We never had a problem before.”
The buildings were moved by the new library as construction is underway in the parking lot on the new administration building.
The Russells’ last child graduated from Armijo in 2012. They stay involved with Sober Grad Night because they feel its worthwhile.
Lori Russell had just finished shopping for student prizes before the holiday break. The Russells had planned to stop by over the weekend to take some of the items home and catalog them.
“It brings tears to your eyes,” Jacques said, while cleaning up the shed with Scott Russell. “When you see it, you don’t have words for it.”
There was one small bright spot: Jacques discovered a purse she had let someone borrow at Sober Grad night. It had been left behind with a few other items, such as bottled water and a bag of pennies.
Lori Russell said she had visited the sheds earlier in December. At the time, she left six rolls of vinyl used to cover the gym walls. They were all gone.
“What will they do with the vinyl?” she asked rhetorically.
New locks will be installed and the committee will face the task of restocking. “The biggest thing is getting the prizes together,” Scott Russell said.
Community members wishing to help the Armijo Sober Grad Night committee can call the Russells at 580-0701 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org Jacques can be reached at 695-9178 or email@example.com.
Reach Amy Maginnis-Honey at 427-6957 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/amaginnisdr.