We, the general public, all know what happened on April 20. But we also have no clue as to what happened either. Granted, we watched the events unfold on live television and the media descended on Littleton like it was the host city of a Super Bowl, but we didn't experience the horrors first hand. We didn't have a smoking gun barrel pointed at us. We didn't feel the bullets and shrapnel rip into our skin. We did run past our friends who lay motionless on the ground in a puddle of their own blood. We didn't spend the rest of the day searching for our friends and children in the pandemonium of Clement Park and Leawood Elementary School. We don't know the full scope of the tragedy, and hopefully never will. And we won't, until it happens to us.
The students from Columbine High are the most resourceful, compassionate, bravest and courageous students I know. Let me explain each of these qualities as I know them.
RESOURCEFUL - During the attack, the students knew the layout of Columbine and found the hiding places. A student by the name of Tim was even able to get into a heating pipe in the back of the faculty lounge and crawl away, until the pipe collapsed in the flooded cafeteria. Those trapped in the science rooms, stayed out of sight of the locked doors. Those in Science Room 3, with William Sanders, did everything they could to keep him alive. They stayed as calm as they could and kept him conscience as they tried to stem his blood loss. To everyone who was in Science Room 3 on April 20, you are as much a hero as everybody else involved in the aftermath of the tragedy.
COMPASSIONATE - Itís difficult enough to go to one funeral, but Littleton is the only place I know of that held 15 funerals in 7 days in which thousands turned out for each, except for the killers, where only a handful showed up. As adults, we may go to a funeral every three to five years for a relative or close friend, but to be a teenager and go to 13 funerals in a week, is absolutely mind boggling. Littleton did it out of necessity, and watching the snippet's of each funeral on the evening news was gut wrenching. Rachelís funeral was the first funeral I have ever seen where her friends and family signed her casket. For those who signed her casket, no truer words could ever be written by those of us who didnít experience first hand the tragedy of April 20.
BRAVEST - For those 40-odd students who survived the library, you are the bravest students I know. Enough said there.
COURAGEOUS - On August 16, 1999, Columbine reopened with the most spirit of any class Iíve ever seen on any first day of school. The killers failed miserably in utterly destroying the school and with a lot of help from local construction companies, Columbine High now looks better than ever. And it will improve drastically when the atrium replaces the library.
At the memorial at Red Rocks Amphitheater on May 2, science teachers Beverly Williams and Teres Miller, representing the entire faculty, presented the students with a banner saying they were their heroes for the manner in which they handled themselves on April 20. This was followed by students Kevin Starky and Aaron Hansey telling the faculty that they were their heroes for the guidance and everything they did on April 20. To all the students, faculty, custodial workers, EMS, police force members, SWAT team members, fire fighters, 911 personnel, doctors and nurses at the hospitals and anybody else who saved lives on April 20, you are my heroes.
Beth Nimmo, mother of Rachel Scott, said on the December 1, 1999 Oprah Winfrey Show that for them to accomplish what used to be just normal routine things throughout the day now are milestones of a good day for them. Many people may have already forgotten the specifics of Columbine, some can't even remember just how many actually died, but those who unfortunately had to live through it, the events of April 20 will be with them for the rest of their lives. It will also be a part of the rest of my life. I won't let the memory out of my head. There's too much good that can come out April 20 for me to simply move on because Columbine isn't the top news story every night.
As I stated earlier, I got most of this information from the Denver Post. If Iíve said anything that is incorrect, please let me know and Iíll change it. I want Littleton, and Columbine High, to know that there is a guy in Dallas who thinks about you every single day and willNEVER forget what happen to Kelly Fleming, Daniel Mauser, Kyle Velasquez, Lauren Townsend, Isaiah Shoels, Matt Kechter, Cassie Bernall, Daniel Rohrbough, Corey DePooter, Rachel Scott, Steve Curnow, John Tomlin and William Sanders. The 13 Angels of Columbine are in my heart and prayers, forever and ever.
I'm working on more in depth information on all the Angles and other people connected to Columbine High School. It'll take me a bit to get all the info to the links, but for now, at least I have a few of them ready for you.
|Rachel Scott||Cassie Bernall||Nicholas & Stephanie|
Never Forget Always Remember