First Victim of Florida School Shooting Identified

The first of the 17 victims from Wednesday's high school shooting in Parkland, Florida has been identified.

According to the Sun-Sentinel, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School athletic director Chris Hixon passed away after being shot by 19-year-old shooter Nikolas Cruz. He was 49 years-old.

(Photo: Facebook / Chris Hixon)

"Chris is such a great guy," said Coral Springs High School athletic director Dan Jacob told the Sun-Sentinel. "Chris is probably the nicest guy I have ever met. He would give you the shirt off his back. He does so much. That is terrible that it would happen to anybody. It is so senseless.

"I am crushed. ... I am totally crushed."

Cruz, a former student at the school who had been expelled in Spring 2017 for "disciplinary reasons," opened fire inside the school minutes before class was being dismissed for the day. He was not allowed on the school grounds after being expelled, yet he arrived at the building wielding an AR-15 rifle.

"We were told last year that he wasn't allowed on campus with a backpack on him," teacher Jim Gard told The Miami Herald. "There were problems with him last year threatening students, and I guess he was asked to leave campus."

Stories of teachers protecting students inside the building have already started to come out, including football coach Aaron Feis who jumped in front of students to protect them from bullets. According to another member of the coaching staff, Fies is still alive and is being treated for his injuries at a hospital.

Melissa Falkowski, one of the teachers who was inside the school after Cruz had started firing rounds, managed to hide 19 of her students inside of a closet to protect them from Cruz.


"...We got maybe 15, 20 steps outside of the classroom, and we were told we were on [indiscernible] and we ran back inside to the classroom, and crouched down on the floor, and then we moved into the closet, and we were hidden in the closet," Falkowski said.

"I managed to put 19 kids in the closet with me," she continued. "I just know this is, like, the worst nightmare scenario that you hope never happens to you."