Haunting Images of the 15 Crosses at Columbine - 1 for Each Victim?. . . but then two are cut down. See the article from 10 years ago and the pictures as well.
|Greg Zanis, crafter of the crosses, deliberately used a different font (letter style) for Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold's crosses to seperate them from their victims. The very presence of the killers' crosses among the victims' outraged many.|
Greg Zanis with one of the crosses he built.
He was opposed to removing Eric & Dylan's crosses from the hill.
15 crosses in Clement Park
13 crosses in Clement Park --
Greg lost his fight to keep Eric & Dylan's there.
May 1, 1999
Markers for Columbine gunmen don't belong in memorial, father of slain student says
By Lynn Bartels and Dina Bunn
Denver Rocky Mountain News Staff Writers
The family of slain Columbine student Daniel Rohrbough on Friday destroyed two crosses that had been erected in memory of the boy's killers.
"I don't think any thinking person in this country is going to going to disgaree with me," said Brian Rohrbough, the father of 15-year-old Daniel.
"We never ever honor a murderer in the same place as the memorial for his victims."
Crosses for the 13 victims and the two gunmen were erected at Clement Park this week.
Rohrbough, 40, said the family took the gunmen's crosses "to a better place."
They were cut up and destroyed, he said.
It was an outrage that a Christian symbol was being used to honor Eric Harris, 18, and Dylan Klebold, 17, Rohrbough said.
Rohrbough and Daniel's stepfather, Rich Petrone, along with Daniel's grandfather, tore down the crosses.
Most bystanders agreed with the action, Rohrbough said.
It began Thursday, Rohrbough said, when police took down signs that his family had placed on the gunmen's crosses. The family asked the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department to relocate the crosses, but nothing happened.
The Illinois carpenter who built the crosses had said earlier Friday that he wanted to include the teen-age killers in his memorial.
"They had a mom and a dad," said Greg Zanis. "They had friends. I think everyone has lost here."
Zanis has been planting crosses for victims of violent deaths for 21/2 years. He estimates he has built almost 200 crosses in nine states.
"It's very important for a family member of a victim to go to the last place a family member was alive," said Zanis, whose father-in-law was murdered in 1996.
Zanis first built a cross for Sandy Contreras, the mother of a 6-year-old who was killed in a drive-by shooting. Then he put one up for his father-in-law. People started asking him to erect crosses for their loved ones.
Zanis said Brian Anderson, a junior who survived the April 20 rampage at Columbine, asked whether he would put up crosses for the 12 students and the teacher who were killed.
Zanis met Brian at Clement Park when he arrived with the crosses.
"He didn't say much," Zanis said. "He was was just sitting on the hill crying."
Zanis and his son, Chris, who had driven 16 hours straight from Illinois, took out their shovels and headed to the top of the hill. People in the park helped dig.
When they finished, Zanis and his son drove away.
"I didn't want to stick around for any media," Zanis said "I'm not a counselor. I'm not a minister. I'm a carpenter."