By Lauren Rearick
18-year-old Kendrick Castillo was killed in the May 7 school shooting at at STEM School Highlands Ranch in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. He was the sole fatality, and Denver authorities and classmates are remembering him as a hero, The Denver Post reports.
According to authorities, two perpetrators used “a number of weapons” to open fire in two classrooms, CNN reported. The attack, which occurred on Tuesday afternoon, resulted in Kendrick’s death eight other people were injured, KMGH-TV, a Denver television station reports. More than 1,800 students in grades K-12 are enrolled at the school.
In an interview with The Denver Post, Kendrick’s father, John, shared that the Denver coroner and his son’s classmates called the 18-year-old a “hero.” According to student reports, the senior had “charged” one of the perpetrators, and was subsequently shot.
Castillo called his son “the best kid in the world,” and he said that he was due to graduate in three days. The 18-year-old had planned to attend Arapahoe Community College, The Denver Post reports.
During an appearance on The Today Show, student Nui Giasolli said her classmate's actions gave others “enough time to get underneath our desks, to get ourselves safe, and to run across the room and escape.”
According to classmates, another student named Brendan Bialy also rushed at one of the perpetrators, the Associated Press reports. He was reportedly not injured in the attack.
The suspects in Tuesday’s shooting were arrested by police, the Associated Press reports. Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock told CNN that authorities are still determining the motive. CNN reports that the school will remain closed for the week.
Tuesday’s shooting is the 43rd incident of gunfire on school grounds in 2019, Everytown notes.
As pointed out by the Associated Press, STEM School Highlands Ranch is located near Columbine High School, where 13 people were killed by two perpetrators in 1999. On April 17, 2019, school districts in Colorado were closed after someone threatened the area.