Painted in green and purple (to signify Bryant’s favorite color), the 200-pound sunflower structure was assembled in a grassy section of the El Centro school’s pathway as part of what Principal Richard Cordero said is slated to be one of several tributes made in memory of the sixth-grade school teacher who was revered by many.
Cordero was happy that the tribute to Bryant was presented before school lets out for the summer, which is today.
“This is the first of many to honor Ms. Bryant,” Cordero said. “I’m just glad we’re the first to put this up before the end of the school year.”
Join the discussion and add your comments to this story! Scroll down or click here and tell us what you think.
Bryant was slain by her longtime companion Nathan Veliquette in October, who shot her to death at a busy intersection in El Centro. Veliquette then fatally shot himself at the same location.
“That is actually something real special,” said Mark McKane, manager of Home Depot, which was one of the companies that donated materials for the project.
The sunflower, which was designed, built and installed by the Rainforest Art Project, was the last piece assembled to the stem before the presentation got under way, McKane said.
Among those who took a moment to remember Bryant was fifth-grade school teacher Marilyn McAlister, who was a personal friend of Bryant.
“She would’ve loved it,” said McAlister with tears brimming around her eyes. “These vibrant colors sparkle, just like her.”
Staff Writer Silvio J. Panta can be reached at 760-337-3442 or at firstname.lastname@example.org