In 1949, the first junior high school in Harlingen, Minnie B. Gay Junior High School, was built on the corner of 13th and Madison. Its architects were Cocke, Bowman & York, and its contractor was E.J. Waitman. It was a two-story building with an auditorium and separate wing. In the 1990s, its name was changed to Memorial Middle School for political correctness.
In 1962, students were asked to submit drawings for a Raider mascot. The winning entry was a cowboy drawn by James Stevenson. A rendition of that mascot was proudly displayed in the weight room and main staircase until renovations were made in 2000. In 2009, Memorial PTA commissioned Carlos R. Leal, an art teacher at Harlingen High School South, to revamp the Raider.
In 2010, a bond for major renovations and construction in HCISD was approved, and the district broke ground for the new campus at a new location in 2011. After more than half a century, Memorial Middle School continues to embody excellence at its new facility, which opened its doors on August 27, 2012. The Cardinal tradition starts here!