I had a hard time deciding which U.S event I wanted to write about, however, I found one event that really struck emotionally to me– The Highland Ranch school shooting in Colorado. As the years go on, we hear about more mass shootings. It is saddening that it is becoming something so usual to us, that it is not of the least bit of concern to some people. “Oh, another mass shooting?” is a phrase that has become so routine to Americans that we do not even realize it.
On May 7th, 2019 just shy of 2pm, gunshots began firing at the K-12 STEM school in Colorado. Let that sink in– K-12. Anywhere from the ages of about five or six to the ages of eighteen/nineteen, having to witness what every student in America has become afraid of. Reports say that the shots began in the middle school portion of the school. The suspect shooters are believed to have been two students that attended the school and they began firing in two classrooms.
One eye-opening thing about this particular shooting is that Highland Ranch is only minutes down the road from Columbine High School. It is only seven miles apart. In this shooting, two students opened fire on their classmates. They killed twelve students and one teacher. Columbine has gone down in history as one of the mass shootings that occurred in the United States, this one occurred in 1999. The 20th anniversary of the Columbine school shooting just recently passed.
Within minutes of the first gun shot at Highland Ranch STEM School shooting, there was an 18-year-old student dead, and eight students were wounded.
On the article that I read, there was a few quotes from a woman who is the mother of twins. She stated, “With everything at Columbine, you never think this would be the reality of this situation.” They did not identify who the woman was, but she also stated that she received a call from her daughter that said, “Mommy, there’s a gun being shot at my school.” There are so many parents and students now that fear the idea of going to school or their kids going to school. There’s never a way to know if something so terrifying, such as school shootings, will happen to your school. There’s always that worry, but so many people think, “it will never happen to me.”
Another couple of students that were injured were ones that did something many others would not do. Brendan, a senior at the STEM school, was sitting in one of the classrooms, when the two suspects entered. Brendan said that one of the suspects pulled a gun from a guitar case. With quick thinking and no hesitation, Brendan and two friends jumped on top of the shooters. Brad Bialy, Brendan’s father, said that one students who attempted to tackle the gunmen was shot in the chest and the other students applied pressure to the wound.
Another student that was injured was a 17-year-old boy. He was shot three times. Thankfully, he is going to be okay and has already been released from the hospital. The student and his father, Fernando Montoya, know that he is very lucky and is still in disbelief that he is able to walk away from this.
The article states that there was no clear warning of the shooting, however, just weeks before there was a scary incident. Douglas County Schools took extreme precautions on April 17th, 2019, as they closed the schools due to a potential threat. There was an armed Florida teen who had an infatuation with the Columbine massacre. The woman made threats to the school before making a trip to Colorado. She was later found dead with self-inflicted gunshot wounds.
Focusing back to the Highland Ranch STEM school shooting, it is said that with the sudden action of the police, they were able to save many lives. In one of the interviews that I watched, a police officer said that the police station was only about a block away, so they were able to respond within minutes, if not seconds. Also in the interview, the police officer gave information on how the parents of the students could hopefully reunite with their child. Some children self-evacuated, while others were still stuck inside the school. The students were being transported by bus over to a recreational center, where they would be able to reunite with their families.