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Stockdale High School paints over class mural

A mural that has been painted over is seen at Stockdale High School in Bakersfield, Calif. (Provided photo)

Nearly 20 years ago, the students from the class of 1998 raised money to contribute a gift to their campus. It's a mural that pays tribute to their mustang mascot.

Community members say it represented their school spirit.

Duane Hartman, junior at Stockdale High, says administration shouldn't have painted over the mural, because it left a lasting impression for those who saw it.

"I think they should have left it, cause it was like the thing you look at when you leave or when you come to school," says Hartman. "They said it was old and chipping. I think we would've raised money to repaint it, if that was the case."

Charmaine Abasta, a Stockdale alum, says she would look at the mural everyday during gym class.

"Each horse was strong, healthy, we were wild, we were free," says Abasta.

Abasta posted on Facebook and immediately people began to react in disappointment.

"I feel so sad, you know, because before there was something there, now it's all gone, and you can never restore that painting," says Abasta.

Community members say they are upset, because they didn't know this was going to happen.

Craig Holland, former Stockdale teacher, says the class of 1998 spent four years raising money to leave a gift to the school, and he can't believe it's been destroyed.

"I'd probably advise a senior class that's graduating to go out and buy a hundred pizzas and have a pizza party rather than to give a gift to the school that they're just gonna destroy," says Holland.

Eyewitness News reached out to the Kern High School District about the mural. The district's response: "With all gifts and project to schools, it is important to note that there may be some unforeseen costs to maintain the originality and aesthetic look of each gift."

Stockdale administration welcomes members of the Class of '98 to provide input and suggestions for new ways to honor their time at the school.

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