Ten year anniversary of Columbine shootings

Posted by Rachel Leigh email

LITTLETON, CO (WFLX) - Ten years ago two high school students opened fire at Columbine High School killing 12 students and a teacher before killing themselves. The violence forever changing how security procedures are performed at schools.

The Columbine community is still grappling with the ghosts of that terrible day. A candlelight vigil for the 13 people killed in the attack drew hundreds on the eve of the 10 year anniversary. A steady stream of visitors moved slowly around the memorial as the sun went down. Some 1,200 candles flickered in the breeze as each victim was remembered. Many people are still recovering emotionally while others are still recovering physically.

Twenty-three people were also injured on April 20, 1999 when Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris opened fire at Columbine.

Conic Nelson, daughter of teacher Dave Sanders, says she visits the memorial from time to time for closure. "It really is a place where I can go and sit and think about my dad. Somewhere, over by the cemetery, it just feels more peaceful, less tragic."

Ever since Columbine, millions of Americans have worried more about safety gaps in their own kids' schools. Many districts even changing their security procedures, but people in Littleton, Colorado say they refuse to let it that awful day define them.

The high school will be closed Monday as the community marks the anniversary of the attack. A private service for victims' families is planned for Monday night at the Columbine Memorial.

Meantime, another dark moment in history: Crowds gathered Sunday to observe the 14th anniversary of the Oklahoma city bombing. In 1995, 168 people died after an explosion at the federal building.

Friends and family members read the names of the victims during a ceremony observed by 168 seconds of silence.

Convicted bomber Timothy McVeigh was sentenced to death for the attack. His co-conspirator, Terry Nichols, is now serving a life sentence with no chance of parole.