If you have not watched this 2014 Dateline series on school shootings, it gives the perspective of survivors and describes their struggles in the months and years after the tragedies occurred. Very moving.
Part 1 – Sam Granillo survived the 1999 shooting at Columbine as a 17-year-old junior. As the 15 year anniversary approached, Sam decided to embark on a 10 day journey, visiting the sites of other school shootings and meeting with survivors in an effort to find tools for healing.
Part 2 – Sam Granillo’s journey starts at Westside Middle School in Jonesboro, Arkansas where he meets two teachers, Debbie Spencer and Lynette Thetford. This is the first time Sam has stepped foot on the location of another school shooting and the teachers, are there to give Sam some much needed validation.
Part 3 – In Red Lake, Minnesota Sam meets survivor Justin Jourdain, whose story from the 2005 shootings is eerily similar to Sam’s. Justin, now a tribal police officer was moved to action in the wake of another school shooting.
Part 4 – One of Sam’s most emotional breakthroughs comes at Northern Illinois University where he meets Joe Dubowski, who lost his daughter Gayle in the 2008 shootings. Joe, a grief and marriage counselor, gives Sam a shoulder to lean on and some great advice as he shares a story about another tragic shooting.
Part 5 – At Virginia Tech Sam meets up with a good friend, Kristina Anderson. Kristina gives Sam a tour of Norris Hall, where she was shot three times, and their bond gives her the strength to talk in the classroom where she almost lost her life.
Part 6 – Sam returns to Columbine High School to meet with former classmates and Principal Frank DeAngelis. It is here that Sam comes face to face with some of his biggest fears and tests just how transformative this journey has been.