The oldest and largest drug prevention campaign in the country is observed locally during the last week of October. Red Ribbon Week aims to spread an anti-drug message to school-aged children.
During Red Ribbon Week, young people are encouraged to pledge a drug-free life. The special emphasis on drug prevention also allows the community to unify in a stand against drugs and to show intolerance for illicit drug use as well as trafficking.
Red Ribbon Week began in 1985 to commemorate the death of Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent Enrique Camarena who was killed while investigating drug traffickers in Mexico. Locally, Red Ribbon participants also honor Chris McCurley, Etowah County Drug Task Force Commander, who lost his life in the fight against illegal drugs in 1997.
The aviation unit and drug agents annually visit county and city schools during Red Ribbon Week in an effort to encourage students to stay drug-free.