CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) – Friends and family gathered Saturday night to remember Claire Davis, the teenager who was shot and killed by a fellow classmate at Arapahoe High School one year ago.
Hundreds gathered for a candlelight remembrance ceremony in Davis’ honor. There was a lot of emotion and a lot of tears at the gathering of a community that has a lot of pride. They were able to reflect on the positive changes and progress that they’ve made in a year since the shooting.
“It’s been a year since any of us last talked to Claire or saw her smiling face,” said Michael Davis, Claire’s father.
Davis was shot and killed when fellow classmate Karl Pierson opened fire inside the school.
“I remember walking out on that cold December day last year … wondering whether Arapahoe and the people who I’d come to love would ever be the same,” a student said to the gathering.
Every day since the shooting has been a step towards healing.
“I think that teenagers who go here realize every day how important their life is,” a woman said.
Claire’s father spoke about the months following the death of his daughter. Although difficult, he said he saw good happen in those months – and change for the better.
“I feel the entire community, led largely by the students and the school, has become much more of a loving place over the last 12 months,” Michael Davis said.
Gov. John Hickenlooper asked that everyone remember Claire Davis, but also to remember all students who have lost their lives to senseless violence in Colorado schools. Fourteen names were read and 14 balloons were lit and then released, representing each of those students.
In a continued show of support for the Davis family and the community, those who showed up at the ceremony brought food or a toy to donate to local charities.
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