SULTAN — Sultan High School senior Tyler Aamold, who turns 18 this month, is Sky Valley born and raised, with a penchant for “metal and mountains.” He also has a “rock-star kind heart and makes it happen,” according to school staff.
Question: You and two friends do the morning announcements, I’m told.
Answer: I am ASB president. So I do the serious information, and then we try to make a little fun. It gets people engaged. When you hear “this is what’s for lunch today” (droning voice) … nobody’s going to listen. So we throw in fun stuff, like Wonky Fact Wednesday.
This is my first time ever holding an elected position. (I’ve learned) you do have the ability to make your school better. One of the things we have going on right now is the Coats Against the Cold coat drive. We’ll have (a collection bin) at Romac Industries and one down at Ben Franklin. That will go through December. We’ll donate it all to the VOA.
Q: You spend part of your day at Sno-Isle TECH Skills Center?
A: I go to a fire science class. It’s been a fantastic experience so far. … The fire service is definitely something I’m looking into pursuing.
Q: What drew you to the fire service?
A: First of all my uncle. He’s a firefighter-paramedic in Lake Stevens. His name is Jerry Aamold. About three years ago I went on a ridealong with him. We got a call right off the bat, and we were flying down the road in an ambulance. I thought, wow, this is really, really cool.
And I’ve always been a person who really likes helping out. I like being involved in the community, whether it be with the VFW or helping out here at the school. … The fire service is a perfect avenue.
And there’s just some really cool stuff in there. You get to go fight fires, car crashes, and all that stuff. I’m kind of an adrenaline junkie.
Q: You’ve gone to Sultan schools the whole way.
A: My family, we’ve been here since the ’60s. My mom and dad graduated from Sultan High School. I’ve been in the valley my entire life.
Q: What do you like most about living here?
A: All the outdoors stuff. I love mountaineering. I love fishing the rivers. I love mountain biking some of the trails and roads we have around here. I love running. I just love being outside.
Q: Where did you go climbing last?
A: Two of my buddies and I, we went up to Mount Stickney. We woke up at 3 in the morning, and we did about 20 miles total. We ran into mountain goats on the way. It was a pretty cool experience. We topped off at about 5,500 feet. It was a lot of fun. … That’s probably my favorite (peak) so far, because it’s right in front of my house — and for years and years, I’d always looked up at it and been like, man, I want to do that mountain.
Q: What do you get from being outdoors?
A: I’m an absolute nature geek. I just love being in the mountains, everything about them, from the smells to being out there in the early morning and you can still see the stars. I saw the sunrise over all these gorgeous mountains. Fall time now, you have all the different fall time colors.
Q: What else do you do in your free time?
A: I also play golf. I started competing when I was 9. … I also have a part-time job down at the same place where my parents work, down at Romac Industries. … I’m a third-generation employee there. My grandpa worked there. My dad took my grandpa’s job. Now I’m there, just doing the maintenance around the building and inside the building.
Q: You say music is important to you?
A: I listen to a lot of old 1980s heavy metal, and a lot of outlaw country. … This summer I had the opportunity to go to a Cody Jinks concert and a Guns N’ Roses concert with my dad … right when we got back from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.
Q: Do you have anybody you look up to, in terms of a mentor or for inspiration?
A: Actually, all of my grandparents. One set of my grandparents lives right next door to me, and the other set lives right across the pasture. They’ve helped raise me a lot. They’ve taught me a lot about how to be a good, moral person.
My parents — my mom, she’s unbelievable. She works hard all day. She does everything for us.
Also my dad, we are very close. He’s taught me a lot about life and taking on the role of being a man, providing for the family, and getting a good start in life. He’s always instilled in me to do the hard work now.
And one of my youth pastors, Zach Day. We have a close bond. He’s the adviser for a club that I started, a Crisis Support Group.
Q: What’s that about?
A: A year ago I had noticed something within the school and the valley, there’s sort of an epidemic of teens with suicidal thoughts and actions. I’d seen people go through this. I said we need to do something about this. So we have this awareness club, because I feel like this issue is kind of put in the closet and not really talked about. There is a problem here, and we need to start talking about it. We got ASB approval, and now we’re waiting for school board approval, and then we’ll do awareness campaigns.
Q: So how does it feel to be at this stage in life?
A: I’m very excited, to say the least. High school, this stage in my life, is fun and all that. But I don’t believe the saying that high school is supposed to be the best years in your life, because then I think then you’re short-changing yourself. I’m looking at the years coming up as going to be the best years of my life. … I’m really excited to get out of high school and just hit life (slaps hands together) right on.
Melissa Slager: firstname.lastname@example.org; 425-339-3432.