Mansfield turns RED to Support the Military

MANSFIELD – The Mansfield University school colors are red and black, but this month, RED is the color and the focus of the campus on Fridays.

RED stands for “Remember Everyone Deployed.”

On Fridays the campus community is urged to wear red as a sign of support for U.S. troops. The movement was born of an idea from MU student and veteran Cecil Cooper and backed by the Student Government Association (SGA).

Cooper is a geosciences major who served in the Army, including deployments to Kuwait during Operation Desert Storm in 1990-91 and Operation Desert Strike in 1996.

“This movement is focused on the support of the troops and their families and their sacrifices during deployments,” Cooper said. “With the wearing of red attire on RED Friday, it’s a common and unified acknowledgement of our service members to let them all know that we have not forgotten them and appreciate their sacrifice to our country.”

SGA launched the new awareness campaign with a campus community gathering at Karl Van Norman Field Friday afternoon. Several hundred students, faculty and staff gathered to spell RED in human letters.

“Not only will the color red be showing support to the troops, but it will also be supporting our University,” Victoria Malatesta, SGA president said. “This is a great thing to do for our military and for our school.”

“I am very proud of this initiative,” said Fran Hendricks, MU president and retired Air Force Brigadier General who served 33 years. “Wearing a different color shirt might seem like a trivial act, but the meaning behind it is significant. It translates to mean that as you prepared for your day, you recognized that others are playing an active role to allow you to go to work or class with relative peace of mind that you are safe.”