Wednesday, January 22, 2020
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Shooting at a Fla. high school leaves 17 dead

17 souls today lost their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Using an assault rifle, a former student allegedly opened fire Wednesday afternoon at a high school in Parkland, Florida, killing 17 students and adults before being taken into custody by Broward County Sheriff’s deputies an hour after he fled the scene with other students, the New York Times reports.

The Stoneman Douglas High School marching band takes the field (school website)

The shooting took place at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School just before the time of dismissal, 2:40 PM. More than 3,000 students attend that high school.

The suspect, identified as a 19-year-old former student who had been expelled in the past, reportedly used an AR-15 semiautomatic assault rifle and was carrying “countless magazines,” according to Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel.

School officials released the following brief statement:

Broward County Public Schools is working closely with law enforcement regarding the tragic situation at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families, as well as the entire Marjory Stoneman Douglas community.

A staging area has been established for parents of Stoneman Douglas High School to reunite students at the Marriott, 11775 Heron Bay Blvd., Coral Springs.

All Broward County Public Schools athletic (games, contests, and matches) and all other events, which were scheduled to start after 5 p.m., today (February 14) have been cancelled districtwide.

The high school is in the Broward County Public Schools district, with more than 250,000 students. It’s the seventh-largest district in the US and has more than 30 high schools, including a few separate “attendance centers” and Stoneman Douglas, which was built in 1990.

List of those killed in the shooting

Authorities released on Thursday the names of the 17 victims killed in this shooting:

  1. Scott Beigel, 35, a geography teacher, credited with saving students’ lives
  2. Alyssa Alhadeff, 14, a soccer player since the age of 3
  3. Martin Duque Anguiano, 14, “a very funny kid, outgoing, and sometimes really quiet”
  4. Nicholas Dworet, 17, a swimmer who hoped for recruitment at the Univ. of Indianapolis
  5. Aaron Feis, 37, a beloved assistant football coach and security monitor
  6. Jaime Guttenberg, 14, a dancer whose Facebook page shows her snuggling a dog
  7. Christopher Hixon, 47, the county’s Athletic Director of the Year in 2017
  8. Luke Hoyer, 15, a basketball player whose favorites were LeBron James and Stephen Curry
  9. Cara Loughran, 14, an excellent student who loved the beach and her family very much
  10. Gina Montalto, 14, a winter color guard member and also, occasionally, a choreographer
  11. Joaquin “Guac” Oliver, 17, a basketball player who had filled notebooks with poetry
  12. Alaina Petty, 14, whose church group helped to clean up Florida after Hurricane Irma
  13. Meadow Pollack, 18, who planned to attend Lynn Univ. and let nothing get in her way
  14. Helena Ramsay, 17, who had a reserved though relentless motivation toward academics
  15. Alex Schachter, 14, a trombone player in the state 5A champion marching band
  16. Carmen Schentrup, 16, a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist
  17. Peter Wang, 15, a JROTC member who generously helped his cousin adjust to Florida

Seventeen victims who no longer celebrate life and the stuff that made this school tick but only death and the endless but empty resolutions to do something positive to stop the violence. Seventeen people who spent their final moments in a hard lockdown at a public school, one of the good public schools by any standards.

Voxitatis updated this story on February 17 to reflect the following change: The names and partial stories for the 17 people killed were included.

Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.

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