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Ohio high school lacrosse team reports swastika painted on an opponent's leg, racial slurs in the stands

Orange superintendent shares a letter saying players reported "seeing a swastika painted on the leg of a Lake Catholic player, and subsequently, alumni and parents reported that a visitor was using racist slurs toward our team."
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File photo

Orange High School boys lacrosse players reported that an opponent on Mentor Lake Catholic had a swastika painted on his leg, and a student photographer captured the image.

Parents in the stands at the Cleveland-area game also reported hearing racial slurs in the stands being directed at a former Orange player during the Monday night match.

Here's the letter Orange Superintendent Lynn Campbell sent to families:

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Dear Orange Families,

It is with great sadness that I write to inform you of an incident that occurred last night on campus during the men’s lacrosse game against Mentor Lake Catholic High School. Our players reported seeing a swastika painted on the leg of a Lake Catholic player, and subsequently, alumni and parents reported that a visitor was using racist slurs toward our team.

I have spoken to the President of Lake Catholic who shared that he and the Diocese are aware of the magnitude of this situation. He confirmed that they are addressing the incidents, and he is very apologetic and obviously, does not approve of these behaviors. It is important to note that student discipline is confidential, so it is likely that we will not be made aware of this player’s consequences.

Please know that safety is our top priority, and the Board does not tolerate discrimination or harassment. Furthermore, we understand the devastating impact these incidents have on kids and our community. Therefore, our players will be informed about the support we have for them as they try to understand and process this incident.

I am proud of how our athletes took the high road and played with dignity, winning this playoff match in a landslide amidst such upsetting circumstances. Here at Orange, we are proud of and celebrate our diversity, and we are very proud of all of our fine students.

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