Last week the principal of Columbine High School, Frank DeAngelis, announced that this would be his last school year as principal. Mr. DeAngelis was the principal at the school at the time of the infamous school shooting that claimed the lives of 12 students and a teacher. Mr. DeAngelis made a promise to the kindergarteners in 1999 that he would stay at the school until they graduated. That was 2 years ago.
I admire Mr. DeAngelis not only for the fortitude he had during the shootings but also for his resolve in the years since.
He’s also been the frequent target of mutants. Alvaro Castillo, who murdered his father before trying to shoot up a North Carolina high school, e-mailed Mr. DeAngelis prior to his crimes. Joshua Kyler Hoggan of Roy, Utah, who was convicted of plotting an attack against Roy High School, actually flew to Colorado to interview Mr. DeAngelis. Not to mention that many of the message board mutants hold Frank DeAngelis personally responsible for Columbine claiming that he fostered an atmosphere if bullying that caused cowards Harris and Klebold to attack the school even though no evidence of them being bullied exists.
Lesser men would have shrunk away from the responsibilities of running a school after such a tragedy but Frank DeAngelis not only turned it into the rallying cry for the school of “We Are Columbine” but he led that charge for another 14 years. If Colorado has any kind of principal of the year award it should be named after Frank DeAngelis.