This heartbreaking interview with the father of Kendrick Castillo, the graduating senior who, along with two other students, rushed the gunman at the lastest Colorado school shooting, reminds me why the fight for sensible gun control is so important.
CNN reporter Scott McLean asked John Castillo how he reacted to the news.
"My immediate reaction was, not knowing his condition, that he was maybe just injured, he was going to be okay. I received a text from his friends saying he had rushed the shooter, chased him.
"They broke the news to us in a small room adjacent to the nurses' station that after we identified him that he passed and was still at the school, at the scene. That's when we found out. I couldn't believe this was happening to my son."
"You had to watch the other parents with their kids," McLean said.
"Oh, yeah. They were there. Buses were coming. They were on the phone, making contact. We didn't have that. you know? I don't know. That's when I found out. not being able to hold him. Marie and I asked if we could at least see him. They're like, since it was an active scene and he was still in the school we wouldn't be allowed to. We sat and waited. We had friends and students. They asked if we wanted the students around us and stuff. Absolutely. As i coached the robotics team, I'm around the kids all the time," Castillo said.
"One of the kids told me like a flash, he jumped up. She said, he's a hero, he saved me. She said you couldn't even see how fast he was running out the door after this person."
"Were you surprised by that?" McLean asked.
"Not at all. We raised him that way to be good. You know, until you're a parent and something like this happens you struggle with it. I know because of what he did, others are alive. Thank God for that. I love him. He's a hero and he always will be. There is another part of you that wishes he would have turned and ran, retreated, hid. Did something to put himself out of harm's way if it was possible," the father said.
"One of the things that one of the mothers who had a son in the classroom told one of my colleagues is that 'if it hadn't been for Kendrick, I wouldn't have my baby today.' I can't imagine. How does it make you feel to hear that?" McLean said.
"It makes me happy that she has her son. It makes me sad mine's not here. In hindsight, i wouldn't have it any other way. I knew there was no way Kendrick would have traded any of that. He's that kind of hero."
Later on in the segment, McLean said some of the students walked out of Kendrick's memorial vigil after two Democratic lawmakers spoke about gun control, while others chanted "Mental health! Mental health!"
This being the Colorado suburbs, I'm not surprised. Because conservatives program the people around them to believe every single problem is a matter of individual responsibility, and so society is never to blame. Right.
As always, I think of this. NSFW!