Columbine High School shooting archive - On April 20, 1999 Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold took the lives of 13 victims and their own lives


[ est. 4 21 1999 ]
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The Injured at Columbine High School
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Stephen Austin Eubanks Stephen Austin Eubanks, 16 in 1999.
He was with best friend Corey DePooter in the library when the shooting began. When the teacher ran in telling everyone to get down, he, Corey, Jennifer Doyle, and an unknown freshman hid under the same table. When the shooters entered the room, Austin heard a bomb go off in the library, and then could hear the gunmen walking around randomly shooting people. He knew the shooters by their first names and later told investigators that usually Dylan wore a trenchcoat but wasn't wearing it in the library at that time.

At one point Austin heard a male voice [John Savage] ask [Dylan] and [Eric] what they were doing, to which [Dylan] responded "Killing people!", before telling the boy to get out of the library. When they got to the table Austin was under, Austin watched as [Dylan] pointed his semi-automatic gun under the table, aimed directly at Corey, then pulled the trigger. Austin covered his head as Dylan continued to fire. When the shooting stopped, he looked up and saw Corey bleeding badly and knew he was dead.

When the shooters finally left the library, Austin and the other survivors under the table got up and ran outside where they were met by police officers. Austin was treated for a gunshot wounds to the hand and a bullet grazed knee. He was released from the hospital the same day and graduated from Columbine High School on May 20, 2000.

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Nick Foss Nicholas 'Nick' Foss, 18 in 1999.
Nick was in the cafeteria eating lunch when he heard a girl shout: "Someone's shooting! Someone's shooting!". He saw two guys outside shooting, anf recognized one of them as Eric, a guy in his Psychology class. He mistakenly told investigators later that the other shooter's name was "Dan". Nick said that he ran outside and asked them what they were doing and they pointed their weapons at him. In another report Nick told investigators that he went over to one of the victims that had "half of his face blown off and was obviously dead" before the shooters fired on him.

He ran back into the school as the shooters fired at him, reaching the cafeteria as the propane bomb inside partially detonated. It shattered the windows and he fell back against a wall. Hearing more bombs go off (pipe bombs) he ran into the bathroom with several other individuals, including student Tim Kastle and teacher Joyce Jankowski, where they all stayed for roughly 45 minutes listening to the shooters fire their weapons.

According to statements Nick gave investigators, it was his suggestion that they might be able to escape through the ceiling ventilation shaft. Ms. Jankowski tried first only to fall through the ceiling. Tim tried next and was able to get out. Nick went up next, and tried to escape by crawling through the ceiling but wound up falling through into the teacher's lounge. He was able to run from the building to police officers waiting outside.

He had a twin brother, Adam, who was also in the school at the time of the shootings. Trapped in an office, Adam helped other students up into the ceiling where the air wasn't so stuffy so they could breathe easier while they hid.

Nick was treated for slight injuries sustained in the 15 foot fall through the ceiling and the bullet that grazed his head. Released April 20, 1999. He told investigators later that he felt as though angels were watching over him that day because one of the killers pointed a gun at his head but it didn't go off when the shooter pulled the trigger. He graduated from Columbine in May, 1999.

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Joyce Jankowski, 45 in 1999.
When the shooting began Joyce, a teacher at Columbine, was in the faculty lounge about to have lunch. She heard a commotion outside an when she looked out the window she saw two bodies. Judy Grecko, one of the other two teachers in the room, tried to call 911 but the phone was dead. Several shots soon followed and Joyce and the other teacher, Amy Burnett, ran into the small one-person bathroom that was attached to the lounge. There were two other faculty members already there (a cafeteria worker named Karen and a teacher, Sue Carruthers) and three students (Nick Foss, Tim Kastle, and Sean Nossaman). When Nick came in, Joyce heard him say: "Oh my God, I saw some kid's face get shot off, and I got hit!" She told investigators that Nick took off his shirt but she didn't remember seeing any injuries.

They heard loud voices and several loud bangs outside the room and Nick told them that the shooters had shotguns. About 10 minutes later she heard four quieter shots, and Nick said he thought that was probably the police shooting at the gunmen. Joyce then heard a "whoosh" sound and smelled something that she told investigators smelled like natural gas.

While they hid in the restroom, the group discussed their options, afraid that the shooters might come into the bathroom. According to Joyce, it was Tim Kastle who first suggested that they could go up into the ceiling. He stood on Nick's shoulders and climbed up; Joyce then followed. She started to move toward what she thought was a vent that lead to the outside of the building but almost immediately fell through the ceiling. She landed astride a cable and then fell all the way to the floor where she went back to the bathroom door, knocked, and was let back in. Shortly after she heard a loud explosion that caused everything in the room to shake.

After about 40 minutes had passed since the starting of the assault, they heard intense voices that sounded as though they were right outside the bathroom door. Joyce then heard two rather calm male voices outside the door and the sound of some metal objects being moved around. Again the group in the bathroom discussed what they should do but before they could decide, another student's head appeared in the open spot in the ceiling where Tim Kastle had gone out. He told them that they should "run off now". Joyce and the others ran out through the cafeteria and out the northwest door to a police unit stationed near the school. She saw Tim Kastle already there and heard him telling the officer there that he knew the shooters were Dylan Klebold and a boy named Harris, though she didn't hear the boy's first name that Tim told the officer.

Joyce was asked by investigators if she knew the shooters and she told investigators that Dylan had been in her class two years prior and she recalled him as quiet, grade-conscious, and creative.

She was treated for injuries sustained in the fall through the ceiling when she tried to escape the school and was released April 20, 1999.

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Adam Kyler Adam Kyler, 16 in 1999.
Adam was in the cafeteria when the shooting began - he told investigators later that fellow victim Kyle Velasquez had been sitting at his table sometime before the shooting began. He heard Coach Dave Sanders yell for the students to get down when the shooters opened fire. Adam then heard popping noises and turned to look and saw Dylan Klebold coming in through one of the doors on the south wall. When he heard three or four shots come from the area near Klebold, Adam got up and ran north toward the kitchen. Just before he reached the serving line Adam was hit with a chair in the ribs.

Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold in the cafeteriaHe got back to his feet with the help of his friend, Dusty Hoffschneider, and the two of them ran toward the kitchen. Adam went into the storage area while Dusty ran back toward the west side of the cafeteria where he pulled the fire alarm and ran out. Adam went to hide in the kitchen.

Adam and 18 other people stayed hidden in the kitchen where they barricaded the doors. At one point they heard the doors rattle but the sound soon stopped when whoever was on the other side couldn't get in. They stayed there for several hours, able to talk to the Denver police from a phone there. They stayed there till the SWAT team told them to get into the bathroom where they were then evacuated by way of the staff lounge.

Coach Dave Sanders runs toward the stairsWhen authorities asked Adam how he knew Dylan, Adam told them that Dylan had begun harassing him at school around November and December 1998. It got to the point where Adam's mother, Susan Kyler, reported it to the school authorities, who said they would take care of the problem; there were no further problems with Klebold after that. Previously Adam had told investigators that Dylan had been with a group of four kids in black trenchcoats had told him near Christmas 1998 that they would kill him if he went to class and that if he told anyone about the threats they would shoot him and also said at the time that these students were part of a group known as the Trench Coat Mafia. However, in a later interview with officials, he said he hadn't had any problems with any of the other Trench Coat Mafia students except for Dylan during the harrassment. He said then that while Dylan was harrassing him three other students, believed to be Trench Coat Mafia members, were with Dylan but that they weren't actually involved in the harrassment. Susan told investigators that Adam had a learning disability and that she believed it to be the reason Dylan had harrassed her son.

He was treated for abdominal pain and released April 20, 1999.

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Stephanie Munson Stephanie Munson, 17 in 1999.
Stephanie and her friend Melissa Walker were heading out of tech lab class to go talk with one of the A.C.E. teachers when she heard popping noises - she had never heard gunfire before so didn't recognize the sounds. About that time a male teacher ran up behind them, yelling at them to get out of the building. She and Melissa ran wast toward the main entrance. As they were exiting through the first set of double doors Stephanie felt as though her left foot exploded: There was a burning sensation and a pop, then her foot went numb.

Once outside the school, Stephanie paused by the bike rack to look at her foot and saw that it was bleeding. Melissa, hysterical, insisted that she keep running. It wasn't until Stephanie got across the street to Leawood Park, though, that she was able to take her shoe and sock off, at which time she discovered that she'd been shot. There were several people already in the park at the time and more were pouring out of the school by the minute. Seeing her wounded ankle, which was a through-and-through injury from a 9mm bullet, someone with a cellphone called 911 . An ambulance arrived and took her to the hospital where she was treated and released April 20, 1999.

Stephanie had just started attending Columbine four months prior to the shootings. She and her younger sister Jennifer designed a commemorative Columbine stuffed bear, made available shortly after the shootings to raise money for other victims. They may not be available any longer but for more information about the bears, write:

Kids Kreations
P.O. Box 622002
Littleton, Colorado

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Patti NielsonPatricia 'Patti' Nielson, 35 in 1999.
Patti was on hall monitor duty when she she saw a male student at the west end of the hallway with a gun. She asked another student [Brian Anderson] who was passing by what was going on and he told her he thought the other student was probably "shooting a movie", and that the gun was probably a prop cap gun since he knew the student in question (later Patti overheard [Brian] telling another teacher his name was Eric Harris and knew he was in the video productions class. Patti didn't think it was right to have a gun in the school, pretend or not, and went to confront the student. She had just passed through the first set of double doors where the student, [Eric Harris], was at when he fired the weapon toward the outside. He then turned and, seeing her and [Brian], smiled and shot at them as well. He missed, hitting the glass doors behind them. Patti was hit with broken glass and shrapnel. Screaming "Dear God! Dear God! Dear God!" in terror, she turned to run. She saw [Brian] get shot in the back as he moved to retreat with her but he was able to keep running with her the opposite direction from the shooter, toward the library.

Once in the library Patti ran to the phone at the circulation desk and dialed 911. While she was on the phone, the librarian Ms. Keating and another teacher came in and told everyone to get out of the library. Patti could hear the gunman getting closer, though, and told the students to get down, under the tables. She remained on the phone with the 911 dispatcher (see transcripts and hear a portion of this call) as long as she could but when it became clear that both shooters were going to enter the library, she left the phone receiver on the floor and crawled as far under the librarian's desk as she could.

She saw the shooters walk past the desk and could see they were both wearing black military-style pants. At one point she heard what she thought was a student trying to stand up to the shooters. She heard him say: "That's enough!" in a confrontational tone, to which one of the gunmen replied: "What do we have here?" She heard them use the racial slur "nigger" and then heard them shoot someone. During the ordeal in the library she heard them call someone "fat boy", and at a later point heard one of the girls cry out "Oh God!" and then heard one of the gunmen ask her if she believed in God. She then heard him call her "awful and hateful names". More gunfire followed. Eventually the shooters went to leave but one of them [Dylan] paused near the circulation desk, saying: "Wait a minute! There's one more thing!" then he smashed a chair on top of the desk. After that she heard one of them say: "Let's go down to the commons."

After the noises stopped entirely she crawled to the librarian's workroom and saw two other women, Lois and Carol, hiding in a small room off the main workroom. Patti crawled inside a cupboard and shut the doors, where she remained for around three hours. While she was in the cupboard, she heard more gunfire coming from the library. She heard the gunmen say they were going to blow the library up but she couldn't bring herself to leave the cupboard for fear of getting shot. Eventually Lois opened the cupboard and told Patti they needed to leave. They were able to escape the school at that point, escorted by police. She ran south to Pierce St. where she was treated for her injuries, including a grazing wound to the shoulder from a bullet. She was then taken to the hospital where she was treated and released April 20, 1999.

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Jennifer Doyle Jennifer Doyle, 17 in 1999.
Jennifer didn't know Eric Harris before the shootings but had met Dylan Klebold before: They had attended elementary school together at Governor's Ranch Elementary and had both been in the CHIPS program together.

After lunch Jennifer went to the library, passing by the tech lab on her way. She sat at a table where Mark Kintgen was already seated. When investigators asked her who else was in the library at the time, she was able to identify Val Schnurr, Lisa Kreutz, Lauren Townsend, and Jeanna Park. She was sitting at her table when [Patti Nielson] and [Brian Anderson] entered. She took the teacher's commands to get under the tables seriously as she could see that Brian was injured. She was going to get under the table she shared with Mark but, concerned that it wasn't big enough to hide her, she ran to a table toward the back of the library where she hid with Austin Eubanks and Corey DePooter. Corey told her and Austin that everything was going to be all right, trying to encourage them and stop them being scared.

She heard gunshots and bombs going off in the direction of the hallway outside the library entrance and while she didn't see the shooters enter, she knew they had come inside the room when she heard a male voice demand: "Get out from under the tables!". No one moved.

At one point she heard one of the gunmen ask very close to her location: "What's your name?" and the person he was addressing answered: "John Savage." The shooter then said: "Oh, we know you. Get out of here." Jennifer thought perhaps the police had showed up and were letting people go but then suddenly one of the two gunmen pulled a chair out from under the table where she was hiding and saw the shooters, and saw Dylan holding a shotgun. She told investigators he had another gun at his hip, which she picked out in a line of silhouettes as being a Tec-9. When he pulled the chair out, Dylan shot beneath the table. She'd had her hand on Corey's shoulder when Dylan opened fire and she started screaming. She realized she should probably stop and when she did, she felt a "pins and needles" sensation in her right hand. She could hear both gunmen laughing and she put her head down on Corey's back, facing away from the gunmen so she could keep her eyes open while playing dead - she didn't want the to see her looking around.

She looked at her hand and saw it was injured so she wrapped the end of Corey's shirt around it. She noticed then that there was blood flowing along Corey's left side and heard him take his last breath. She knew then that he'd been killed. She heard one of the shooters say then: "You know what else I've wanted to do?" and the other boy responded: "Yeah. Stab someone." Jennifer lay very still then; she was afraid if she moved that she would be stabbed. After a while she thought the shooters had left the library and she said something to Austin, to which he responded: "Shhhh!" and the two of them said nothing more for a while. Finally Austin tapped her and said, "We've got to get out of here." and the two of them backed out from under the table and they both fled the school. She ran to a police car which was positioned 20 to 30 feet away where she saw other male students removing their shirts to use to help the wounded. After a while of waiting police cruisers showed up to evacuate the students hiding there with her. She was in the third car that came.

Jennifer took three shotgun pellets to the right hand: One crushed her ring finger, another entered her wrist, and another entered the back of her hand, resulting in seven broken bones. Released before April 24, 1999. Jennifer now has a metal plate and screws holding her ring finger together. Graduated from Columbine High School on May 20, 2000. Went on to University of Colorado in the fall.

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Daniel Steepleton Daniel Steepleton, 17 in 1999.
Daniel had lunch fifth period, and he spent it in the library, where he met up with Makai Hall. He and Makai sat at a table with Corey DePooter, Patrick Ireland, and Austin Eubanks, where they were for about 10 minutes before he started hearing something that sounded like the librarian hammering something into the wall. He looked toward the circulation desk and about that time he heard a woman yell: "Get down! They have guns!". As he ducked under the table he glanced out the window and saw a group of people running from the school past the soccer field.

While he was hiding under the table he'd ducked under, along with Makai Hall, Patrick Ireland, and a dark-haired girl he didn't know, he could hear the banging sounds getting closer and felt the floor shake. As the sounds intensified he heard a male voice yell: "This is for the four years of bullshit we had to put up with!" (a later report to another officer said that the gunman yelled: "This is for the four years of bullshit you've given us!"). Then one of the shooters yelled: "Everyone with a white hat, stand up!". At one point he heard one of the gunmen ask someone "Do you believe in God?" and a female voice answer "Yes". He heard a gunshot afterward and people screaming. He told investigators he could hear a shotgun and an automatic weapon being fired at the same time.

Then he saw them, over by the east end of the computer tables. He described them to investigators: "walking with a bounce, and appearing very happy". He described the first as being tall, white, wearing a long black coat, black boots, and a black hat on backwards. He had fairly long hair, possibly blond, and was carrying a shotgun and a royal blue backpack over one shoulder. Daniel told investigators he recognized the gunman as a member of a group called the Trench Coat Mafia (he later told investigators that he hadn't known Dylan previously but had learned his name from news reports was Dylan Klebold). Daniel said he didn't have classes with any of them and didn't know the rest of the group well enough to be able to identify them. Daniel described the second gunman as a shorter white male who was wearing a long black coat, black boots, a black baseball cap worn backwards. He had short hair and was carrying an automatic handgun and a royal blue backpack over one shoulder. He told investigators it was his impression this shorter gunman was in charge of what was going on; that it appeared as though the shorter shooter took the lead and the taller one would follow him.

He heard the shorter gunman say: "The cops are outside." and then both shooters ran toward the west windows, where they began shooting out at the police. As they moved toward the windows, the gunmen lit bombs and threw them. After they shot out the windows, the taller of the two announced: "All the jocks with white caps stand up." Daniel, who was wearing a white hat, started to stand up -- he told investigators that he thought the gunmen had already seen him because the desks had no chairs to hide behind, leaving the people hiding under it mostly exposed. He didn't want the gunmen to shoot the other people hiding under the table with him but Makai restrained him, telling him: "Don't move." Daniel stayed where he was.

Aerial view of the triage area a few blocks away from the schoolThe fire alarm was going off and people became very quiet at that time. He could hear the shooters laughing; they began shooting at people again and threw more bombs. Daniel saw them return to the backpacks they'd set on a nearby table - he thought they might be reloading their weapons. Daniel saw Dylan look directly at him, smile, and then lift the sawed-off shotgun he held and fired directly at Daniel's table. Daniel was hit in the left knee - he noticed it as a sensation of warmth. He also saw that Makai had been hit in the right leg and it looked "torn up". Patrick Ireland reached over to help Makai and Daniel heard another shot and saw Patrick go down; he had been shot in the head. Both gunmen were shooting at the time so Daniel wasn't sure who had shot Pat.

Daniel fell to the floor where he lay with his head down, playing dead. As all three boys lay on the floor, unmoving, a small bomb rolled under their table and landed on Daniel's right upper thigh. The fuse was burning but Daniel was afraid to move as he didn't want the gunmen to shoot at the table again. Makai grabbed the bomb and threw it out, toward the south wall. It exploded midair, loud enough to shake the floor. Daniel shut his eyes then and kept them closed.

He then heard one of the gunmen say: "Stand up, nigger boy." and heard them both laughing, but he didn't look up to see what was happening. He heard another gun shot. He then heard one of them say: "Let me see your kife. I've always wanted to do this." He then heard one of them say: "Oh, that's gross!" and heard them both laugh again.

It got quiet in the library then; he could still here bombs going off but they sounded further away - possibly in the library. Daniel looked around then and saw people getting up and moving toward the west door. Makai told him "Let's go." and he, Makai, and the girl got up and left. Daniel told investigators that he felt bad that he didn't help Patrick. He knew Pat was still alive when they got up to leave the library. He was treated for a shotgun blast to the leg; he took five pellets to the knee and one to the chin. He was released before April 24, 1999. Daniel graduated Columbine on May 20, 2000.

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