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Walnut valley Unified School District

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Statues Honor 9/11 Victims at Diamond Bar High

NEWS                                                                                   Walnut Valley Unified School District
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                           880 S. Lemon Avenue
September 11, 2012                                                          Walnut, CA 91789

Kelli Gile, Office of Community Resources
(909) 595-1261 ext. 31204

Statues Honor 9/11 Victims at Diamond Bar High

DIAMOND BAR, CA—Several white sculptures are on display today at Diamond Bar High School as a tribute to the victims of the September 11 tragedy.

The artwork in the school’s quad includes a life-sized young man in a chair, Twin Towers, Pentagon, and a 93 (representing the flight that crashed into the Pentagon).

Art teacher Dave Hamel coordinates the annual tribute. 

He selected the teenage boy in the chair created a decade ago in a Fundamental Art class because the expression can be interpreted in so many ways, he said.

Students working in groups selected one person to pose with a chair. The piece was formed from poultry wire and covered with white paper mache’.

“I’ve kept this particular one all this time because it is a very interesting piece. It captures what that student was doing at that moment in time,” he said.

Early this morning Hamel added a red scarf to the display after seeing a story on C-SPAN.

A man named Welles was known for always wearing a red bandana his father had given him as a child in Boston. He went everywhere with it. He even wore playing high school and college sports.

Welles went on to become a stockbroker on that fateful day was in the second Tower when it was hit, Hamel said.

He survived and helped many victims escape down over a hundred flights of stairs to safety.

“All they could see of him through the smoke was his red bandana,” Hamel said. Welles went back up and rescued more people that day, but never made it out himself.

“I added a small red towel on the approximate spot where he would have been,” Hamel said.

Hamel explained what the sculptures represented and the meaning of the red bandana to his Fundamentals of Art class.  And then asked them to share the story with their friends at lunch.

“It’s not just for him, but for all the hero rescuers who never made it out,” he said.

The school also honored the victims with a moment of silence and then recited the Pledge of Allegiance.


Statues on display at Diamond Bar High School pay tribute to the nation’s tragedy.

Art teacher Dave Hamel explains the meaning the 9/11 tribute on display in the school’s quad to his Fundamentals of Art students.