Though 3 miles and 11 years separate the shootings at Deer Creek Middle School from the infamous attack at Columbine High, old wounds were opened again this week.
“I was shocked to see that (a shooting) would happen again, especially in Littleton, because it seems like a nice, quiet little town,” Columbine High senior Kelci Brady said Wednesday, a day after a gunman shot two students at Deer Creek. “You never know when something is going to happen or who is going to do it — it’s not like you can keep it from happening.”
Feelings of vulnerability were shared by many Columbine students on Wednesday. Most agreed there isn’t much more the district can do to keep kids safe.
Kyle Hauck, 17, of Littleton said he felt a little anxious about coming to school on Wednesday morning.
“After a shooting, it’s always a little weird thinking about what could happen, but I think that it is pretty safe for the most part, and I feel pretty safe coming back,” Hauck said.
Hauck said administrators are prepared, as much as they can be, for security threats. “They have to be ready for everything and anything, and I think that they are,” he said.
Columbine freshman Ruby Dominguez, 14, and her sister, sophomore Abby Dominguez, 16, were at home when they saw the story break on TV.
“My mom got a call from (the district) saying that the schools were in lockdown because of a shooting, and she called us at home, but we were already watching it,” Ruby Dominguez said.
The girls discussed the situation with their father later in the evening, and they told him that violence has no home address.
“Bad things can happen anywhere,” said Ruby.
The sisters said they felt safe going to school Wednesday morning, but added that coming to Columbine for the first time as freshmen elicited some troubled thoughts.
“Most of the time, I don’t think about that people were killed here, but stuff like this makes me think of it again,” said Abby.
Columbine sophomore Evelin Quinonez, 16, of Littleton, said she was afraid to return to school after the Deer Creek shootings.
“If it could happen at a middle school, then it could happen here again,” Quinonez said. Quinonez and her mom where watching the news at home when the story broke.
“I was afraid to come back (to school), but my mom told me that if I was really worried that I could call her and she would excuse me so that I could come home.
“I hope that this makes people take the (lockdown) drills more seriously,” said Quiononez.