Conn. shooting opens old wounds for Columbine survivors

8:35 AM, Dec 15, 2012   |    comments
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Many of those wounds are far from healed, but Friday night some members of the community came together at Fred Thompson Memorial Park for a vigil to remember those who died.

For Anne Marie Hochhalter, the pain of Friday's massacre went deeper. Hochhalter was in Columbine High School when two gunman came in and started shooting in 1999.

"Obviously I'm in a wheelchair from what happened. I was shot twice from the tech 9 Machine Gun," Hochhalter said.

Hochhalter was paralyzed and spent a long time recovering. She understands what the victims of the school shooting in Connecticut are going through because she experienced a similar pain.

"It's almost like we feel our hearts getting ripped open all over again to know that another community is going through what we went through," Hochhalter said.

The hearts of countless people in Colorado are troubled by the recent events, and that's why two mothers organized a vigil.

"We wanted to come together to show that there is hope, and we feel for the families who are going through this tragedy. We wanted to do something," Jennifer Vold said.

It is because of people like Jennifer Vold who care enough to bring people together that victims like Anne Marie Hochhalter are able to heal.

Hochhalter says the support of people around her, the therapy she has gone through and her faith have all contributed to her making it through the darkest days of her life. Now, thirteen years after the Columbine High School massacre, she says she's able to tell other people who went through similar situations that it gets better.

"If there is some way that I can make a difference in other people's lives from what I've been through; it makes me feel good that I can somehow make a difference," Hochhalter said.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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