The photo before you is a picture of 18 year old Kendrick Castillo. He was killed while trying to save his friends during the school shooting here in my community yesterday (5-7-19). He was the only fatality and I am asking for prayers to be poured out on the Castillo family. The horrible tragedy at the Highlands Ranch STEM School has hurt us all and this is a time to come together and support each other in love.
I want to give you the link to The Denver Post news article about Kendrick, so you can read what his parents and friends said about him. This young man will forever be a hero. He and another young man (who survived) rushed the adult male shooter and tackled him to the ground. Both young men are heroes and they were both shot multiple times in the encounter. They laid down there lives for their friends, and their bravery, courage, and love stands as a righteous example for us all.
“He was the best kid in the world,” John Castillo said through tears Wednesday morning.
Castillo said Kendrick’s friends and the coroner told him that the 18-year-old and another boy charged one of the shooters once they entered their classroom. The coroner told Castillo his son was a hero, that the gunfire he took would have hurt other people.
“It doesn’t surprise me,” Castillo said. “He cared enough about people that he would do something like that, even though it’s against my better judgment.
“I wish he had gone and hid,” Castillo continued, “but that’s not his character. His character is about protecting people, helping people.”
-Sam Tabachnik, The Denver Post
The whole community is heart broken over Kendrick and he deserves to be honored and remembered forever. This tragedy has impacted so many people we know here in our community and hit so close to home. There are teachers my wife works with that have kids who go to that school in Highlands Ranch. They ran out of the school yesterday to rush up the road to get their kids. Thank God their kids are safe. All the other kids who were injured are going to be okay. Some are still in serious condition, so please keep praying for healing for them all. Some of the people we know are friends with the families whose kids were injured. It has been traumatic for everyone and the outpouring of love and support in the community has been a blessing.
The other young man who bravely rushed the adult male shooter alongside Kendrick is Brendan Bialy. He is graduating in just a few days and he will be joining the Marine Corps. He chose the right profession and his bravery and courage proved it! My heart is lifted up by such acts of bravery and love and I pray God heals his wounds and lifts him up. May God bless his career in the Marine Corps!
“Brendan’s courage and commitment to swiftly ending this tragic incident at the risk of his own safety is admirable and inspiring,” the Marines said in a statement.
“His decisive actions resulted in the safety and protection of his teachers and fellow classmates.”
-Chuck Hickey, Fox 31 News Denver
Both Kendrick and Brendan deserve to be honored for their heroic actions yesterday. Those two 18 year old men laid down there lives for their friends and that is rare courage in this world and that is true love.
Kendrick ended up giving up his life and his friend’s lives were saved because of it. Kendrick will be remembered forever in our hearts. I pray the Lord draws near to his parents and family and comforts their hearts. I pray the Lord pours out His love on them.
Jesus told us there is no greater love than laying down your life for your friends. That is true love that comes from God and that is what Jesus did for us. Kendrick’s death is not in vain and his life is already being used for God’s glory. Kendrick died for his friends yesterday and I will remember him forever. My heart is broken for his parents and my prayers will be with them for the rest of my life.
Thank you all for your prayers and love for our community here in Douglas County.
Grace and peace to you all
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
Jesus speaking in John 15:13