Two twelfth grade students arrived at Columbine High School around midday on the 20th of April 1999. Their names were Dylan Bennet Klebold and Eric David Harris and the actions they took that afternoon would change the world forever. And no one will ever be able to tell us why they did what they did that terrible afternoon.
Dylan and Eric, armed with firearms, bombs, and knives entered their school and went on a 50-minute rampage which left 13 people dead and another 24 wounded. The attack came to be known as the Columbine Massacre and remains the deadliest shooting attack to ever have occurred at an American High School.
The boys committed suicide in the library where they’d killed most their victims before police could get to them. Survivors say they heard Dylan and Eric shout out “One! Two! Three!” followed by the gunfire. Dylan shot himself in the temple with his TEC-9 handgun and Eric shot himself in the mouth with his shotgun. From their diaries, which were later recovered it seems that they had planned to commit suicide or be killed in a shootout with police.
Here are a few things you probably didn’t know about the Columbine Massacre…
1. The Student Resource Officer Who Forgot His Glasses
Neil Gardner was the assigned Student Resource Officer for Columbine High School at the time of the massacre. He usually ate with the students in the cafeteria during his lunchtime, but on April 20th he switched up his routine and ate his lunch in his car at the northwest corner of the campus, which meant he failed to see Dylan and Eric place the duffel bags in the cafeteria and begin shooting students. He was alerted to the situation when a call came through on the school radio and he rushed back to the west entrance.
When he got there, he encountered Eric Harris, who immediately opened fire on him from about sixty feet away. Neil Gardner drew his service weapon and shot back at Eric Harris from behind his squad car, but he’d forgotten his prescription glasses at home that day and wasn’t able to hit Eric Harris.