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‘She is here in spirit’, Kirtland Central gives parents honorary diploma for late Ashlynne Mike

‘She is here in spirit’, Kirtland Central gives parents honorary diploma for late Ashlynne Mike

KIRTLAND

She would have been a Kirtland Central High alumna.

‘She is here in spirit’, Kirtland Central gives parents honorary diploma for late Ashlynne Mike

Special to the Times | Lee Begaye
Pamela Foster and Gary Mike hold up their daughter’s honorary high school diploma during the Kirtland Central High’s graduation on May 28.

Ashlynne Mike would have celebrated with her classmates at the Broncos Stadium on Saturday morning wearing purple and gold. She would have been 18 and preparing for life after high school.

Ashlynne died on May 2, 2016, when she and her younger brother, Ian, didn’t make it home from school. A predator tricked the siblings – then 11 and 9, respectively – into getting into his van after they had gotten off the bus in Shiprock. Hours later, passersby found Ian alone wandering an area.

‘She is here in spirit’, Kirtland Central gives parents honorary diploma for late Ashlynne Mike

Gary Mike, Ashlynne Mike’s father, takes a picture of Ashlynne’s graduation cake at a public reception held after the Kirtland High School graduation, where the late Ashlynne Mike’s family received an honorary diploma.

Authorities found Ashlynne’s body the next day. She had been sexually assaulted, strangled, and bludgeoned repeatedly with a tire iron.

Kirtland Central High honored Ashlynne with an honorary diploma.

Read the full story in the June 1 edition of the Navajo Times.


About The Author

Holly James

Holly James is Kinyaa'áanii (the Towering House Clan) and born for Tódích’íi’nii (Bitter Water Clan). Her maternal grandfather is Kinłichíi’nii (Red House Clan), and her paternal grandfather is Honágháahnii (One-walks-around Clan). Ms. James was born in Tséhootsooí (Fort Defiance), Ariz., and grew up in Phoenix. She began her tenure with the Navajo Times as a freelancer, and a year ago, she moved from Nevada to Diné Bikéyah and became a full-time reporter. Her passion is sharing the light of her Diné People, the tenacity, pride, ingenuity, and resilience they show daily. She intends to enrich the hopes and aspirations of the Diné through the stories of contributions and hardships, survival, and culture revitalization.

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