The Colorado teenager, Claire Davis, age 17, who was shot in the head at Arapahoe High School during the Dec.13 school shooting, died on Saturday. Her family was with her when she passed away.
The teenager was pronounced dead at 4:29 p.m. at the hospital she was in after being placed on life support for eight days.
The news of her tragic death spread like Colorado wildfire, and a large memorial that had been erected at the Colorado school burned brightly from newly lit candles. Many visitors grouped together in freezing temperatures, with snow falling to say their personal farewells to Claire.
Allison Bruhn, who is a junior at Arapahoe, shown up at Arapahoe on Saturday evening similar as to she had done the eight days before. Only this time, she was holding on to a poster that was from the school’s dance squad. On it, the team members had written messages telling of their love for Claire. Tears filled Allison’s eyes as she went around lighting up candles and holding her friends close to her.
She stated that she had come by the Colorado school each night, and prayed that Clare would get better. Allison said that Arapahoe High School loves Davis and that the teenager was such a nice and giving individual.
A member of the community, Shannon Wilhelm, along with her husband and her son Deagan, age 5, put flowers around the fence near the school as snow began to cover over the many poster boards, written messages and photographs which had been left by the many townspeople coming to leave their respects. The Wilhelm family did not know Davis personally but Mrs. Wilhelm sobbed while she cradled her young son in her arms.
She said that by being a parent, to lose a child, especially near the holidays or even at any time of the year, that is not something a person wants anyone else to have to endure.
When Camille Nyls and her daughter Kendall, who is a sophomore at the Colorado school, heard that Davis had passed away, they bought a flower bouquet and placed it at the memorial site.
The Adventist hospital proclaimed the teenager had died in a posting on Facebook at 5:15 p.m. It stated that despite the greatest efforts of the physicians and nursing staff of the hospital, and Claire’s fighting spirit, her injuries were just too severe. Even the most progressive medical treatments were unable to prevent such a tragic loss of life. Claire’s death is enormously heartbreaking for the entire community, hospital staff and hospital families.
The hospital added that there would be information about a public celebration over Claire’s life which would be held at a later date. It also informed the public they could still leave cards for the Davis family in a “Cards for Claire” box, which was set up in the main entrance of the hospital.
It was around 6:30 p.m. that the Davis family released their own statement, which said that although they had lost their precious daughter, they would always be grateful for the unforgettable journey she took them on over the past 17 years. They stated they were extremely blessed to have been Claire’s parents. The laughter, grace and light she gave to the world will not be quenched by her death; to the contrary, it will only grow stronger.
They asked for privacy, and then proceeded to thank first-responders, the sheriff’s office and others for the extraordinary work they performed on their daughter’s behalf.
Davis was shot with a shotgun at point-blank range after a gunman raged into the Colorado school’s north entrance. It was around the noon hour on Dec. 13. The high school senior was just sitting in a school hallway and did not have time to even react before the gunman, age 18, and an Arapahoe student fired on her and then moved to the library, where he committed suicide.
Colorado police investigators think she was only an accidental victim, in the wrong place at the wrong time. She and the gunman were possibly acquainted, they were not friends.
The Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson stated that investigators think the gunman’s chief target was a debate coach who also doubled as the librarian.
It was just on Friday night that over 100 people had assembled at Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church in Centennial, Colorado, which was only a few blocks to the south of the high school, to pray for Davis at a candlelight vigil. However, on Saturday was when Davis passed away.
By Kimberly Ruble