Kendrick Castillo was just three days away from graduating from STEM School Highlands Ranch in Denver when an 18-year-old reportedly walked into his classroom and pulled a gun from a guitar case.
It was then that Castillo and two other students rushed the gunman in an attempt to disarm him. Castillo was shot and killed.
As The Daily Mail reported, the senior was the only person killed in Tuesday’s shooting, in which one 18-year-old student and an underage girl, who authorities said was transitioning to a man, opened fire in a coordinated attack. Eight students suffered gunshot wounds in the attack, and three remained in intensive care as of Wednesday morning.
The motive for the Colorado school shooting remains unclear, but some of the acts of heroism in the midst of bloodshed are coming to light. As The New York Post reported, Castillo was one of three students who rushed to disarm the gunman, including Brendan Bialy, an aspiring Marine. Brendan’s parents said that the three who decided to attack the gunman were friends and that one of them was shot in the chest. Other students tried to stop the student’s bleeding by applying pressure to the wound, the report noted. It did not confirm if the wounded student was Kendrick Castillo.
After the shooting, the family of Brendan Bialy released a short statement.
“We are deeply saddened for the victims, families, friends, and community on this tragic day,” the family told NBC News through their lawyer, Mark L. Bryant. “We’d like to commend the immediate response of law enforcement and assure all we are strong with the love of our families, community, friends, and everyone sending concern, wishes, and strength. We will persevere.”
There were other acts of heroism amid the Colorado school shooting, USA Today reported. Witnesses said another unidentified girl jumped at the shooter in a classroom, which allowed other students to take cover and stay protected.
It was not clear exactly how many lives may have been saved because of Kendrick Castillo’s heroic sacrifice, but other recent school shootings have left many more dead. This week’s shooting took place just a few miles from Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, where a pair of gunman launched an attack that left 12 students and one teacher dead in 1999.
Police have two suspects in custody in relation to the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch. They have not yet announced what charges they will face.