Red Ribbon Week Begins
(OCT24)--NEWARK, NJ) – Red Ribbon Week is the nation’s largest drug prevention effort, and this year marks the 21st anniversary of the anti-drug campaign, which is celebrated October 23-31. This year personnel from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) New Jersey Division will be attending schools and providing drug prevention events located throughout the State of New Jersey.
Red Ribbon Week began after drug traffickers in Mexico kidnapped, tortured and brutally murdered Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena in March 1985. The Red Ribbon Campaign is dedicated to helping to preserve Special Agent Camarena's memory and further the cause for which he gave his life, the fight against the violence of drug crime and the misery of addiction. By gathering together in special events and wearing a Red Ribbon during the last week in October, Americans from all walks of life demonstrate their opposition to drugs.
Gerard P. McAleer, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA New Jersey Division stated “This week serves as a reminder of the ultimate sacrifice that Special Agent Camarena and others who have gave their live for this most important mission. Every child deserves a healthy and drug free life. The Red Ribbon severs as a reminder of all of the sacrifices made by our hero’s.”
Red Ribbon week started as a local effort in Camarena’s hometown of Calexico, California when Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-CA) and Camarena’s high school friend, Henry Lozano, created Camarena Clubs to ensure fond memories of Kiki. The National Family Partnership (NFP) created a national campaign of observance, which starts the third week of October each year, proclaimed by the U.S. Congress and chaired by then President and Mrs. Reagan. Approximately 80 million people participate in Red Ribbon events every year. For news about events scheduled in your areas, please check the web at www.dea.gov or contact Special Agent Douglas S. Collier at (973) 776-1143.