by: Natasha Chen Updated:
SAMMAMISH, Wash. - About two dozen students, alumni and community members rallied Saturday in support of ousted gay administrator Mark Zmuda. While they were emboldened by Zmuda’s interview last week, Eastside Catholic School representatives said that his statements were not true.
Zmuda spoke last week with an Eastside Catholic School freshman Catrina Crittenden about why he left the school.
In the video Crittenden asked, “There's been a lot of confusion over whether you were fired or if you resigned. Which one is it?”
Zmuda answered, “To set the record straight, I was terminated.”
But Mike Patterson, an attorney for the school, told KIRO 7 that Zmuda willingly resigned and that he admitted to officials he had not lived up to his contract.
In the interview Zmuda’s interview said, “I asked why I was being terminated. And they said because I violated Catholic teaching. I asked if it was a breach of contract and they said no. I asked if this had anything to do with my job performance or evaluations and they also said no. They said it was because I was married to a man and violated Catholic teaching. But I did not resign. I was terminated. I was let go.”
That message struck a chord with people rallying to support him on Saturday.
“It was really powerful to hear him say here's what happened,” said senior Ian Edwards.
Edwards called his comments “blatantly honest”.
Even after hearing the school attorney’s response, senior Julia Burns said she sided with the former vice principal.
“I was really even more ashamed with our administration,” Burns said. “I would believe Mr. Z. I don't see him having any reason to lie about that.”
Patterson said there was no plan to revisit Zmuda’s employment.