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Students share their DARE strategies
By CHRIS COLLINS
Of the Baker City Herald
Two Baker High School seniors brought living proof of why young people shouldnt use drugs and alcohol to South Baker Elementary School Thursday.
Lindy Morgan is a talented actress who enjoys singing and will tap dance in the upcoming BHS performance of Anything Goes.
Greg Goodenough was a member of the BHS basketball team that placed fifth in state this year. His athletic abilities also have been important to the success of the Bulldog football team. Now that its spring, he can be found on the baseball diamond.
Both attribute their successes in and out of the classroom to their decision to remain drug and alcohol free.
Morgan said she decided when she was much younger that drugs and alcohol werent for her.
When I get offered drugs or alcohol its easy for me to say no, I dont want to do that, she said. I know these things hurt people, and I dont want to hurt myself.
As teen-agers, they have much more freedom than their younger counterparts, the two told the South Baker students. Along with that freedom they face responsibilities and choices such as who they spend their time with, whether they do their homework and whether to use drugs or alcohol.
Goodenough said its important to know what your response will be ahead of time when an offer of drugs or alcohol comes your way.
When I go home, I feel good when I say no to that kind of stuff, he said.
Goodenough and Morgan said neither of them get offered drugs or alcohol very often because their friends know where they stand on the issue.
Thats why choosing the right friends is another important decision students make along the way to adulthood.
Thats the good thing about positive relationships, Goodenough said. They can push you to do the right thing.
Morgan and Goodenough completed the DARE program as sixth-graders at Churchill Elementary School. They were among six BHS seniors chosen to serve as role models in classes taught by Wyn Lohner of the Baker City Police Department. Others are Chad Smith, Arly Goodyear, Nick Strommer and Kati Stuchlick. This is Lohners second year as the citys DARE officer and the first year the program has been offered at the fifth-grade level.
Thursday was declared National DARE Day by President George W. Bush in recognition of the programs goal to encourage students to live healthy, drug-free lives.
Morgan and Goodenough told the fifth-graders that they have worked hard to do well academically in preparation for college. Morgan plans to attend Pacific University at Forest Grove where she will study to become a doctor. Goodenough plans to study law at an Oregon university.
Both acknowledged that using drugs and alcohol would have kept them from getting the good grades needed to pursue their goals.
You can get addicted, Goodenough told the students. It changes your life. When you start that stuff it doesnt lead to anything good; you just want more.