Yesterday is a little too close to this day in my life.
It was a somewhat sunny January day in 2001. I was done with classes for that afternoon and was checking out CNN. That’s when I saw this story — apparently, there had been someone planning to stage a Columbine incident at my twin brother’s community college.
My heart was racing as I called Sean (my twin) and asked him if he knew why classes had been cancelled. I then told him about the thing I had seen on CNN. Sean looked at the story and told me that if this person had succeeded with his plans, he would have killed hundreds of people and Sean might have been one of them.
Yeah. All this because Al De Guzman,a freshman at De Anza, was pissed off at his life and angry at the rich kids who seemed to have a better one. (Apparently the Virginia Tech gunman had the same complaints.)
The mass casualties were prevented because a clerk at Longs (a drugstore chain on the West Coast) was processing film and saw the pics of bombs and guns. Her father was a San Jose police officer and she knew to be leery of what she saw. De Guzman was apprehended when he came to get his film and police spent the next 48 hours sweeping the campus for bombs and hidden weapons. The clerk got a 4 year scholarship from the California State University system and De Guzman got 70 years behind bars. He hanged himself in prison 3 1/2 years later.
So why am I avoiding the media today? Simple. I know what happened. I know that 32 innocent people are dead as well as the gunman. I don’t need to see endless reels of footage from the campus or hear soundbytes of 911 calls. Instead, I’d prefer to pray for the families and friends of the victims… as well as the parents and loved ones of the gunman who are probably wondering what went wrong here.
That is all.