Story Behind the Mural: An ongoing series commemorating Westfield’s 20-year anniversary. Each article will reflect on a bygone schoolyear by spotlighting one of the class murals that grace our hallways.

      Coming out of the Westfield library and taking a left, you pass a vibrant collection of moments from the Class of 2004, Westfield High School’s third graduating class. These are presented in four rows of four, sixteen squares total, each with its own striking image. Collectively, the squares create a picture of a bulldog paw print, showcasing a budding school spirit that’s now 16 years old and still thriving despite being sidelined by the coronavirus pandemic. On both sides of the mural, names span the length of the walls, memorializing graduates who are now in their 30s. 

      The painting conveys glimpses from various corners of the school.  Pictured are volleyball regional champions, football state champs, and theatre events such as Willy Wonka and Once Upon a Mattress.

      The football picture offers a snapshot of  December 23, 2003, when Westfield won its first state championship. It was the start of a legacy, as the program would go on for many years of success. The first state championship team was led by big names such as Eddie Royal, Evan Royster, and Sean Glennon. As many football fans in the  community know, these three stars all played at the next level, ultimately reaching the NFL. This put Stonecroft Boulevard on the map and made a great name for Westfield Football.

      Outside of the sports world, many in the community were coming to Westfield for the must-see show, Willy Wonka. The strong attendance and enthusiasm the theatre department enjoys today were also very much present back in 2004. The second that the dates were announced for performances, everyone was buzzing. Willy Wonka went down as one of the school’s  best loved shows, and has been followed by many more acclaimed theatre events every year.

      Aside from an eventful year inside the walls of Westfield and the community as a whole, 2004 was a year comprising many notable events throughout the country and the rest of the world. Tragedy occured on February 1, when 251 people were trampled to death along with 244 injured in a stampede at the Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, along with massacres and terrorist attacks by Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups. Although these events were tragic for the whole world, many positives were to follow such as the Statue of Liberty being reopened to the public (after being closed for several years due to the attacks of 9/11), the Boston Red Sox winning their first World Series since 1918, and the first ever gay marriage being performed.

      Coming out of the Westfield library and taking a left, the vibrant collection of moments painted on the wall is where the class of 2004 left their mark for the rest of time. A quote passed down from our football teams, reads, “For those who have passed, for those to come.”