'I Was Heartbroken': 8th Grader Suspended After Wearing Shirt To Support His Brother In The Military

| by Jonathan Constante
Alan Holmes and his motherAlan Holmes and his mother

An eighth grade student in Oregon was suspended from school because the shirt he was wearing to support the military had a gun on it.

Alan Holmes showed up to Dexter McCarty Middle School in Gresham, Oregon, on Oct. 7 with a shirt that featured the image of a traditional soldier memorial: a rifle, boots and a helmet, KATU reported. The shirt also read, “Standing for those who stood for us.”

But when the principal saw his shirt, Alan says he gave him an ultimatum. He was told to either change his shirt or face in-school suspension. Alan, whose older brother is a Marine, chose the latter.

“The principal, I asked him, is this considered a suspension?” Alan told KATU. “He said yes I'll see you tomorrow and I left.”

Alan said he will never forget the day his older brother returned from serving in Iraq.

“I was proud of him,” Alan said. “I remember the day he came home and I was just so happy. I was little but I still remember it, he made me happy.”

The school dress code does prohibit students from wearing clothing that promotes alcohol, drugs, tobacco or violence. Alan said he understands how people could be sensitive to the image on his shirt given recent school shootings, but he still insisted that it was not a violent image.

“I was just upset. I was heartbroken,” Alan said. “My brother, he means everything for me. Just being able to help and give back to the people who fought and died for us it just makes me feel good.”

The district did not release any official statement on the issue. They only said that weapons on a shirt are considered inappropriate for a school setting.

Sources: KATU, Oregon Telegraph / Photo Credit: Screenshot from KATU