It was Hat Day for all the elementary schools in Bemidji Friday. But it wasn’t just any Hat Day, it was a fundraiser to raise money and build a memorial for the 6-year-old girl who froze to death in February.
There was excitement in the air, as students got to wear their favorite hats to school. Wearing hats in class is banned, but Friday was a special occasion because for every hat worn a donation was made to raise money to build a memorial for Mercedes Mayfield.
Mayfield’s first grade teacher Kim Bolte says Mayfield loved school and wanted to be a teacher when she grew up. Bolte also says Mayfield’s family is extremely grateful for the schools’ initiative to honor Mayfield.
Donations have been pouring in, not just within the schools but also from the community. After a memorial is built, school officials plan to donate the rest of the funds to Mayfield’s family for funeral expenses. Schools are continuing to accept donations that can be dropped off at J.W. Smith Elementary School.