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In the aftermath of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, a Neuqua Valley student stepped up to show support.

Freshman Rahael Javaid had a personal connection to Parkland that inspired her to create a sign of solidarity.

“This banner was inspired by one of my closest family friends, and he just lost a lot of his friends there because of the terrible shooting that happened,” explained Javaid. “And I wanted to dedicate this whole entire banner toward their family and all the family that lost their children’s lives and all the people who are affected by all of this.”

The Neuqua freshman class, faculty and staff have filled a school flag with about 1000 signatures and messages of support.

“I think the neat part about this is while you have academic classrooms and we’re talking about content and we’re talking about history, the most important thing is doing it,” said Javaid’s world history teacher Tim McCoskey. “Stepping up and answering the call of citizenship and starting conversations. If we as a school can foster that and if we as a nation can foster that, then I think we’re all in a much better spot.”

After the final signatures, the banner was sent off to Marjory Stoneman Douglas.

“As a community here in Naperville I feel as though it’s our duty to support other schools around our nation,” added Javaid. “I feel proud as a student here at Neuqua Valley High School that we could do something like this to show our support and love for all the students there that are dealing with this problem right now.”

Javaid was recently nominated by one of her teachers for a special Service and Civics award for her student leadership and activism.

Naperville News 17’s Christine Lena reports.