Spencer High School students volunteer following incident at AJ McClung Memorial Stadium

Published: Aug. 30, 2023 at 9:49 AM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - More than 100 Spencer High School students gathered at AJ McClung Memorial Stadium on Aug. 30 to set an example following the incident at the 61st annual Heritage Bowl on Aug. 25.

The students rode a bus to the stadium in the morning, and spent nearly one hour and 30 minutes picking up trash from the football game on Friday, Aug. 25.

“I’m here on behalf of JROTC because earlier in the event, we wanted to represent the colors. As we know that’s an important part of any event. We want to make sure that represent our nation as a whole.” said Elvin Rodriquez, a Spencer High student ambassador. “So, we came here to help clean up because after what happened on the game, the area was dirty, but we wanted to give back to the community since we got to make sure we finish what we started.”

It’s the first year on the job for Rosa Patterson, Spencer High’s principal.

“We wanted to make sure that we helped out with making sure there that there was a clean up process in place. We want to make sure we left the stadium the same way that we found it,” she said. “A lot of our students are outstanding students, and they’re amazing athletes.

Dozens of bags full of trash, picked up by student volunteers. Gary Gaither, a Spencer High Football player, was one of those volunteers.

“It was in pretty rough shape, but we cleaned it up. Everybody came together, and we cleaned it up. I just feel like we did what we had to do, and it’s clean,” Gaither said.

Since the game, three juveniles have been arrested on various weapon charges.

The weapons were found outside of the stadium in the parking lot, and it’s not clear if the weapons were ever fired on Friday night.