top of page
  • Imani Elsey, Brianna Martinette, Taylor Rice

Memorial Benches Removed from Halls of Churchland High School

​​The memorial​ ​benches​ ​that​ ​were​ ​in​ ​the​ ​hall​ ​by​ ​the​ ​main​ ​office​ ​were removed​ ​by​ ​staff​ ​Thursday,​ ​September​ ​12th.

​​The​ ​​benches​ ​were​ ​purchased​ ​by​ ​the​ ​class​ ​of​ ​2013​ ​with​ ​the​ ​intentions​ ​of​ ​creating​ ​a peaceful​ ​place​ ​for​ ​students​ ​to​ ​learn,​ ​study​ ​and​ ​have​ ​fun.​

​One​ ​of​ ​the​ ​memorial​ ​benches​ ​is​ ​for​ former​ CHS ​student​ ​athlete​ ​Marvell​ ​T.​ ​Edmonson,​ ​known​ ​as​ ​a​ ​“popular​ ​young​ ​man,”​ who ​passed away​ ​from​ ​a​ ​hazing​ incident ​at​ ​Virginia​ ​State​ ​University​ ​on April​ ​20, 2013.​

The other​ bench ​is​ ​for​ ​former school secretary​ ​Martha​ ​McEwen​ ​who​ ​passed​ ​from​ ​health​ ​issues​ ​January​ ​3,​ ​2013.

When​ ​the​ ​benches​ ​arrived,​ ​they​ ​were​ ​placed​ ​on​ ​the​ ​school​ ​seal​ ​as​ ​a​ ​temporary​ ​spot. The benches​ ​have​ ​been​ ​in​ ​the​ ​main​ ​hall​ ​for​ ​over​ ​two​ ​years,​ ​roped​ ​off​ ​and​ ​untouched​ ​for​ that​ ​long.

Controversy​ ​started​ ​when​ ​the benches​ ​were​ ​relocated​ ​to​ ​the 'Dreaming​ ​Garden'​ ​outside near​ ​the​ ​Senior​ ​Court​ ​Yard, prompting some to say that school staff were being insensitive.

In discussing how the rumors spread, assistant principal, Mrs. Incorminias, said, "One person took it and ran with it."

However, former Churchland High School principal, ​Dr.​ ​Bechtol, had put in a work order years​ ​ago to ​have the benches relocated to the 'Dreaming Garden​.'

When new​ ​principal​, ​Mr.​ ​Millaci​, ​arrived​ ​to​ ​the​ ​school,​ ​he​ ​intended​ ​to​ ​complete​ ​unfinished projects​ ​around​ ​the​ ​campus. ​

​​​“​It​ ​should​ ​have been done​ ​a​ ​long​ ​time​ ​ago," Millaci said.

​The​ ​Dreaming​ ​Garden​ ​has​ ​a​ ​set​ ​plan​ ​for​ ​the​ ​future,​ and ​right​ ​now​ ​it​ ​is​ ​at​ ​phase​ ​one.​ ​Later classes​ ​that​ ​graduate​ ​can​ ​donate​ ​money​ or a gift ​to​ ​the​ ​garden.​ ​Within​ ​the​ ​near​ ​future,​ ​the​ ​horticulture class​ ​will​ ​plant​ ​flowers​ ​along​ ​it's ​walkway.

bottom of page