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In Memory Of

Corey DePooter

March 3, 1982 - April 20, 1999

 

Corey was on duty as a library volunteer. When the gunmen came in, he hid under a table with friends and was shot as the gunmen sprayed bullets at floor level.

Corey trusted that law and order would allow him a fair chance in life, and didn't expect more than that, according to friends and relatives. When the gunmen were walking down the hall to the Columbine High School library, where Corey and dozens of other students were wondering whether to climb out windows, Corey offered calm advice. Survivor Austin Eubanks recalled him saying: "Stay tight... The cops will come."

The other students took his advice and huddled under tables, trying to control their shaking.
"But I never really saw him scared," said Austin, Corey's best friend, who huddled next to him there. "Even under that table, he wasn't afraid."

 


 

Corey was 17 years old, and a junior. He loved to golf, hunt and fish, and he liked in-line skating. He also used to be a wrestler, but he quit the wrestling team after his sophomore year to focus on the academics. He recently got a maintenance job at a golf club to save up for a fishing boat with a friend. He was a good student, and when he had wis wisdom teeth removed this year, he was frustrated because it forced him to miss school.

Corey was a patriotic guy "your grandfather would like" who was willing to die for his country.

A neighbor remembered holding the infant Corey 17 years ago, when he arrived home from the hospital, and she remembered a conversation with him last month when he told her he wanted to join the Marines. He never caused any problems in the neighborhood, she said.
"He would be home alone on weekends with his parents gone, and there were never any parties," she said. "He's a good kid, a wonderful kid."

Classmates described Corey the same way, saying he put his schoolwork above all else.

Austin Eubanks and Corey had just been on the greatest trip of their life. Their parents had agreed to let them go alone to Oklahoma to fish. The trip, planned for six months, started horribly, with Corey's keys locked in his green Ford truck the night before, then a snow storm that had Corey driving 30 mph into Kansas, then a wreck that left Corey shaky and calling his father. They waited out the storm in Colby, Kansas, and Corey's father drove the family's Chrysler minivan out to Kansas to swap because the Ford, though not badly damaged, might not be safe enough for his only son.

The boys persevered. Their trip got better. In the end, Depooter caught the biggest fish of his life, a 7-pound bass, snagged in the brush.

And he'd impressed the hell out of Austin's grandfather and uncles in Oklahoma. He was the kind of best friend that, in situations like that, would leave you feeling good about yourself, Austin said.
"He just knew how to handle himself, how to talk... He was respectful to everyone, never looked down on people. He gave everyone a chance."

He is survived by a 15 year old sister and two parents.

 

COREY DePOOTER PICTURES

 

Articles

May 4, 2000. Corey's highest dream was to become a Marine, and now he has been made an honorary Marine after his death.

 

Where to make donations to Corey:

Corey DePooter Marine Toys-for-Tots Program
c/o Colorado Marines
20600 E. Sixth Ave. Building 130
Buckley ANGB
Aurora, CO 80111

 

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