By Theresa Woelk

Staff writer

HERMISTON — He did not want praise and he did not want fanfare, but his presence made such an impact on the people associated with Rocky Heights Elementary that they could not let Dr. Richard Mack retire without giving him something special.

Students, staff members, parents and volunteers dedicated the new outdoor classroom at Rocky Heights to Mack, who will retire as principal at the end of this school year. The group held a surprise assembly Friday in his honor.

Students serenaded Mack with songs they learned especially to honor him. Then the group headed outdoors to christen the new outdoor classroom.

The outdoor classroom idea had been a dream of Mack's for the past few years. He wanted to give students a special place to learn. Mack thought it was going to be called the "Freedom Circle," but instead the group installed a plaque that declared the horseshoe-shaped space to be the "Mack Arena."

(For the full story, please see the May 27, 2003, issue of the Hermiston Herald.)

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