Ohhboy. :(

January 6, 2011

So if anyone actually follows my blog closely enough, you’ll notice that I posted two Disney 30 Day Challenges today and none yesterday. I actually have a super-legit reason for missing a day.

My community experienced a tragedy yesterday, in one of the high schools. My former high school. The high school my sister currently attends.

Yesterday afternoon, a student shot two of our administrators, assistant principal Dr. Vicki Kaspar and principal Dr. Curtis Case. Dr. Kaspar passed away last night. Dr. Case is currently in serious, but stable condition. He is expected to recover.

Essentially, over the holiday break, this student drove his car on the high school’s track (and possibly football field, I can’t remember right now). Wednesday was the first day back from the winter break. Dr. Kaspar called the student into her office in the morning and suspended him for 19 days for his acts over the school break. He was escorted out of the school. He returned later Wednesday, I believe shortly before 1pm, and went to the main office, signed in, and requested to speak with Dr. Kaspar. Once he got back to her office, he shot her twice in the torso. Dr. Case came out of his office across the hall, and ended up being shot three times in the back. The gunman then shot twice (or maybe three times, again, I can’t remember) down the hallway. He missed a janitor who was in the hall, however, debris from the bullets hitting something injured the school nurse. The student then left the school, drove his car about 3 or so miles away to a business park, where he shot and killed himself inside his car.

While this was happening, a code red was issued throughout the school. This means that there is a dangerous person inside the school, and that all classrooms need to shut and lock their doors, turn off the lights, and basically hide all the students away from the doors and windows. The students who were eating lunch in the cafeteria, which is the student area closest to the main office, were all hiding back in the kitchen.

Students were released from the school starting at about 2:45-ish, on a class-by-class basis. All students had to basically sign out (with police or administrators, I don’t know). The area outside the school looked like a disaster movie. There were police cruisers -everywhere-, there were SWAT trucks, there were police directing traffic, there was a news crew from every local news station as well as from the local newspaper, there were even National Guard members.

There have been several events that have already been planned and have taken place to memorialize the tragic events of January 5th. There was a gathering at noon today with (I’d say) about 150 students. There was a candlelight vigil tonight at 7pm, which was first organized through Facebook. On the 6 o’clock news, though, I saw it being announced. I’d say that there were -easily- 500 people there tonight. Students, alumni, parents, community members, everybody.

My emotions about this tragedy in general are really, really similar to my feelings when the attacks on September 11th took place. I feel incredibly violated. I can’t believe somebody can just walk into my school, my second home for four years of my life, and take a life like that.

I’m glad I’m no longer a Millard South student. I don’t think I could ever walk into that school and feel safe again. Tomorrow the students are going back. At 7:30am they’re all going to meet in the front of the school and walk in together, that way nobody has to walk into school alone. That is quite possibly the best idea I’ve heard in a long time.

Throughout this whole tragedy, I’ve been constantly impressed with everyone involved, from the teachers taking action first to protect the students, to the police and other law enforcement for making everything calm and orderly, to the parents for remaining calm (at least on the outside) and to the community as a whole. As with September 11th, I feel a great sense of patriotism after this horrendous tragedy. However, unlike September 11th, it’s not American patriotism I’m feeling. It’s Millard South Patriotism.

We are, and forever will be, Millard South.




  1. Oh my gosh. I hope not to trivialize the seriousness of the situation with my comments, since we’ve never even met, but I am so sorry for your community and the family of the administrators targeted. I have a younger sister in high school, and I don’t know how I would react to such a shocking situation. I think it’s absolutely great how the high school and community have come together in this whole tragedy, and I hope that the hurt starts to heal soon.

    Hoping for the best for your sister and her friends!

  2. Very beautifully written, Kaleigh. I’m so sorry…..

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