Their stories are everywhere. A J Boik, buried in purple, his favorite color and the family asking everyone to wear purple to his celebration of life, one year ago. His mom and girlfriend shared a moment at his grave recently. As the two of them walked away, A.J.'s mom said "He is going home with me now, you can have him later." His girlfriend shared their favorite spot, one where A.J. had proposed, a few weeks earlier. They had their life planned out. They were going to be together always. In that dark theater A.J. shielded her from the gunmans bullets. He died as she watched! I talk a lot about A.J. He is the same age as my own son Nick..They both graduated in the class of 2012. A.J. from Gateway HS in Aurora, my Nick from Thornton HS in Thornton , Co. Nick finished his first year of college, making us proud. A.J. died before he had that chance. So we remember him as he was. The night of the shooting I prayed for all those families but I felt drawn to A.J. because he was so similar to my own son. I have prayed many prayers for the family and his beautiful girlfriend. They are always with me. Matt McQuinn took a bullet so his girlfriend would live. He was, as his family says, "A Super Hero". He had plans to move back to Ohio just a few weeks shy of the shooting. His dad loves to tell the story of Matt wanting to put a V8 engine in his dodge Avenger! His dad kept telling Matt, it would not work, yet Matt had a dream, a plan of his own! Matt would celebrate his 28th birthday this year, just like my son Jeremy. His life, as brief as it was, was a good one. A kind heart, taken away too soon.
Veronica Moser-Sullivan was 6! She was always smiling and had learned how to swim. Having a celebration with a movie, took her young life and paralyzed her mother Ashley who also suffered a miscarriage. Ian Sullivan, the father of Veronica has set a goal. He is going to climb all the Colorado Fourteeners! A Fourteener is a mountain peak that is higher than 14,000 feet! Colorado has fifty three of them! Ian has a lot of climbing to do! He says it is the one place where he feels totally at peace and can remember his young daughter.
"I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace.In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world. John 16:33
*my photos are courtesy of the DenverPost newspaper Agency and AP.