Voices

Colorado School Shooting

April 21, 1999

"In about one second it went from eating lunch to something weird's going on to, 'Oh my God you're about to die. Run.'"

Joe Tran, Columbine High School student

"They were going around; they were laughing about it. They'd shoot somebody; they'd laugh; they'd giggle. ... You'd hear a shot go off, you'd hear somebody yell and scream, another shot go off and they'd yell and scream, another shot and there would be silence."

Joshua Lapp, sophomore

"They just started shooting. Anybody who was walking, talking they just shot. That was the sick part about it. ... All I saw was big black trench coats and guns, man, and bombs."

Nick Claus, senior

"At first we thought it was fireworks, then we saw them shooting. He saw us and then he started shooting at us. Then a guy in a white T-shirt threw two hand grenades on the roof. We hit the ground and then we started running."

Jack Apoeaca, 16, student

"I just kept thinking, 'How could this happen? Why our school?' "

Ryan Ishino, 17, senior

"This is a good high school, with a good group of kids. It is an academic, preppy, suburbs school."

Gwen Pina, mother of a Columbine High junior

"Obviously the parents who found their children are happy. The other ones ..."

Colorado Gov. Bill Owens

"That's one of the great mysteries: How do you identify a student who is going to act out?"

Barbara Wheeler, school board member in Downers Grove, Ill., and former president of the National School Boards Association

"It's not something you can do with a metal detector. We as a community have to teach kids to stop and think and respect one another."

Kevin P. Dwyer of the National Association for School Psychologists in Bethesda

Pub Date: 04/21/99

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