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  • Columbine Survivors Strive to Succeed
  • Posted By:
  • Karen W.
  • Posted On:
  • 19-Apr-2009
  • It is difficult to believe that it has been ten years since the world-shattering bloody massacre of Columbine occurred. So much has happened since that day and yet all such incidents are contrasted against the Columbine horror. Any similar event of student mass murder or gunfire in schools has to be measured against the Columbine Massacre yardstick.

    So how are the survivors coping? Patrick Ireland, now 27 years old, who suffered head and leg injuries has a very positive outlook on life. He managed to crawl out from under a table where he hid when the gunmen were in the library. Despite his injuries he made it 50 meters to a broken window and he has no recollection of falling out of it into the arms of a paramedic. Today he works in a financial company while sitting in a wheel chair. His mantra is "I choose to be a victor rather than a victim."

    Other survivors have had nightmares, anxiety attacks and panic disorders to name a few of the by products. Sean Graves had to fake his own death after he approached the two gunmen as they were loading their guns. Sean mistakenly thought they were paint-ball guns and wanted to join them in some fun. Instead they shot him and left him on the parking lot for dead. Later he smeared blood all over his face to make it look like he really was dead. Maybe then he would not be shot once more.

    Sean now walks with a limp and he feels the pain still. He has just bought a new home with his fiancée and he hopes to return to college to pursue a degree in forensics. He became interested in this line of work after the massacre which claimed 12 lives at Columbine. Other students have written books about the events of the day, some are doing speaking engagements and others have slid into obscurity. But the memories of the events never disappear.


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