FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Elmhurst High School graduates will have one more chance to walk through the halls before the school is torn down by its new owner.
Class of 1995 graduate Daniel Westrick says alumni deserve a final walkthrough.
“Everybody here at Elmhurst cared about me so much and this school made me the person who I am today so not only do I want to say goodbye, I want to say thank you,” Westrick said.
The building was sold earlier this month by Fort Wayne Community Schools for $600,000. The new owner, Hanson Aggregates Midwest LLC, conducted a site inspection of Elmhurst and determined the building is in a state of disrepair. The only course of action would be to tear it down, according to a news release.
Westrick has put out the word out that he’s organizing the event and alumni from all over and all decades are emailing him. He’s received more than 400 responses.
“I graduated in 1964 and I would be interested in looking through part of the building when it’s scheduled,” one email read. “I live in Texas, but I will try and coordinate a visit with my Fort Wayne family and friends to coincide with the date that’s set.”
Westrick said he’s not surprised by the response.
“The graduates are definitely in support of a final walkthrough,” he explained. “They don’t care if the building is pretty much empty. They just want to go through one last time, say their goodbyes, re-live their memories, show off their spouses and kids, ‘Hey, I went to this school.'”
From 1929 to 2010, Elmhurst High School shaped many lives in the Waynedale neighborhood.
“Being a school here for over 80 years, you get attached to it,” Westrick said. “At some point, kind of like when you see your 18, 19 year old kid off to college. It’s kind of like that goodbye. I think it’s good that the new owner is going to give the graduates and the residents here in Waynedale a chance to finally say goodbye.”
To sign up for the final walkthrough, emaill westrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
No date has been set yet for the school’s demolition.