At least 17 people have been gunned down in cold blood by an expelled maniac student in a school in Parkland, southeast Florida.
They were defenceless when former student Nikolas Cruz, 19, entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School with an AR-15 and opened fire.
Dozens more have been wounded in the mass shooting.
The identities of some of the 17 victims murdered in the mass shooting are starting to emerge.
Jaime Guttenberg, 14, was described by relatives as a ‘kind-hearted, sweet’ girl. She attended the school with her younger brother who survived and rushed home afterwards.
Senior Nicholas Dworet was a gifted swimmer who had his sights set on 2020 Tokyo Olympics success. His devastated college student girlfriend is among those grieving his death. Friends said he was not just a talented athlete, but a ‘good guy’ who will be missed.
Martin Duque, 14, was missing for hours on Wednesday and his frantic family desperately appealed for him to get in touch on social media. On Thursday, his older brother Miguel confirmed his death. Martin was a freshman.
Meadow Pollack, 18, was preparing for college. Her father was at the school on Wednesday and showed her photograph around in the hope that she would be found alive.
Cara Loughran was missing on Wednesday afternoon. Her mother Denise and her father rushed to the designated hotel where parents were told to go to be reunited with their children in the hope that she would be found alive. Her grieving neighbor confirmed her death on Thursday.
Alyssa Alhadeff, 15, was eulogized by her mother who said she was a talented soccer player and creative mind. ‘All she had to offer the world was love… I just sent her to school and she was shot and killed,’ she said.
Luke Hoyer, 15, was described as a ‘precious’ child by his grandparents who confirmed his death. They found out about the shooting on television. They said he was a ‘good kid’ who ‘never got in trouble’.
Joaquin Oliver, 17, was also killed. Joaquin was a Venezuelan immigrant who came to the US with his family for a ‘better future’, they said on Thursday.
Gina Montalto, 15, was a freshman, she served on the school’s winter guard team. She died late Wednesday night, friends and family confirmed on social media. Montalto had been missing after the shooting and was not answering her phone.
Alaina Petty. “There are no hashtags for moments like this, only sadness,” said Petty’s great aunt. “ Our hearts are with them and all the families touched by this tragedy.”
Carmen Schentrup, was a gifted student who last year was named as a semifinalist in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program. It includes students who score above average in their SATs or National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.
Peter Wang, 15, also died. His parents speak little English and relied on their neighbor to post social media appeals looking for him. They went to the Marriott hotel with other parents to wait for news of him on Wednesday night and have since confirmed that he was among those killed. One local woman said students had told her Peter held the door open for others while they fled.
Hero teachers Scott Beigel, 35, and Chris Hixon, 49, (right) were killed shielding students.
Beigel was a geography teacher at the school who unlocked his classroom to allow panicked students to take shelter inside during the shooting. He was struck and killed by a bullet while closing the door behind them.
Hixon was the athletic director at the high school, he was confirmed dead by family and friends Thursday. He previously served as South Broward’s athletic director.
Aaron Feis, 37, was an assistant football coach who was critically injured after jumping in front of the shooter to protect students, died from his wounds early Thursday morning. The school’s football team announced the news on its Twitter account.