Klebold & Harris – The History

Klebold’s yearbook photo

Dylan Bennet Klebold was born in Denver, CO, on September 11, 1981, the second child of Susan and Thomas. His brother, Byron, was three years older. Both boys were named after famous poets.

In grade school, the young Klebold was considered gifted; however, throughout his school years, he never applied himself to his schoolwork. Shy and gentle, he was a Boy Scout, and loved baseball; he pitched for his team. While he never had a girlfriend, he was social with various groups, and described as a follower. He and his friends were involved in playing video games, midnight bowling and Fantasy Football leagues. At some point, he took on the nickname, “VoDKa,” wherein his initials were capitalized. His closest friend was Eric Harris.

Very interested in technology, Klebold built his own home computer. At school, he was a techie, mostly on the sound board and lighting, for school productions. He became involved in video production, and with his high school’s Rebel News Network. He was a computer-lab assistant, and helped to maintain the school’s computer server.

Apart from other writings and notes, on March 31, 1997, Klebold began a journal. He described that time as “a weird time, weird life, weird existence.” He mentioned being depressed, hating his life in general, and not fitting in. He wrote about suicide. At one point, he wrote that “…everyone is conspiring against me…” Also inside that journal were several mentions of girls he “love[d],” and a number of letters to one girl, which were never sent. He wrote that someone had purchased a gun for him, so that he could kill himself; in November, 1997, he described wanting to acquire a gun and kill people with it.

On January 30, 1998, Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris were arrested in Jefferson County, after having broken into a van; both were charged with “Criminal Mischief,” “Theft,” and “Criminal Trespass.” In April of that year, after an offer was extended by the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, both were placed in the Juvenile Diversion Program. There, they attended anger-management courses and counseling; they paid their fines; and, they were to complete a mandatory community-service requirement.

In April, 1998, near the end of their Junior year, the high school yearbook was released. Klebold wrote four different entries in Harris’s book. One such note spoke of “killing enemies, blowing up stuff, killing cops!!” while another mentioned “our revenge in the commons.” The cafeteria at Columbine High School, was also known as the Commons.

For a short time, Klebold and Harris worked together at a local pizza restaurant.

Klebold had never expressed an interest in firearms. In stark contrast, he was accepted to University of Arizona, and was excited about becoming a Computer Science major. On March 25, 1999, the Klebold family spent four days, driving to his new school and back; they picked out his dorm room. During that time, they noticed nothing out of the ordinary with Dylan.

His daily behavior gave no clue to what he and Harris were planning. However, in copious evidence were the myriad poems and stories, written for a creative-writing class, and extremely graphic and violent essays, written for English class; all of these depicted war and death, and gratuitous mention of blood.

Once the mandatory community-service requirement of the diversion program, had been completed, all charges were dropped. He and Harris were released, on February 9, 1999.

Harris’s yearbook photo

Eric David Harris was born on April 9, 1981, in Wichita, KS, to Kathy and Wayne Harris. He had a brother, Kevin, who was three years older.

Wayne Harris had been in the U.S. Air Force. During those years, the family moved numerous times: Dayton, OH, in 1983; Oscoda, MI, in 1989; and, Plattsburg, NY, in 1992. In July, 1993, after he had retired from active duty, they moved to Littleton, CO.

The young Harris began attendance at Ken Caryl Middle School, where he met Dylan Klebold.

Harris played baseball and soccer; he collected baseball cards, and played video games. By middle school, he was interested in computers. In high school, he was involved in video production, and with the school’s Rebel News Network; and, he was a regular in the school’s computer lab. He went by the nickname, “REB,” presumably short for “Rebel,” the school’s mascot.

On January 30, 1998, Harris and Klebold were arrested in Jefferson County, after having broken into a van; both were charged with “Criminal Mischief,” “Theft,” and “Criminal Trespass.” In April of that year, after an offer was extended by the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, both were placed in the Juvenile Diversion Program. There, they attended anger-management courses and counseling; they paid their fines; and, they completed a mandatory community-service requirement.

On March 18, 1998, Randy Brown, father to Brooks Brown, filed a “suspicious incident” report with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office. The report stated that Brooks had been receiving death threats from Harris, by way of one or more of Harris’s Web pages. Mister Brown made note, also, that Harris’s online writings mentioned the making and detonating of pipe bombs—and of using them against people. Due to fear of retribution against himself and his family—particularly, his son—Brown requested anonymity. After accessing Harris’s Web pages was attempted and failed by the Sheriff’s office, Mister Brown’s reports could not be substantiated; since the report and limited investigation were seen as routine, then-Sheriff Ronald Beckham was not notified of the report. And, since Brown had requested anonymity, Harris was not contacted.

In April, 1998, near the end of their Junior year, the high school yearbook was released. Among the notes that he wrote in Klebold’s book, was, “God I can’t wait till[sic] they die. I can taste the blood now…” In his own yearbook, he annotated the majority of the students’ photographs with “beat,” “worthless,” “die,” and the like—or, simply, an “X” through the picture.

Also in April, 1998, Harris began his own journal, in which he wrote about his complete hatred of Mankind. He wrote that “before I leave this worthless place, I will kill whoever I deem unfit…” He believed that he and “V”(Klebold) were not the same as everyone else, because they were self-aware. He wrote about embracing his anger, and wanting to exact revenge against many people, for having done him wrong.

Video of a school project where they “killed” other students

For a short time, Klebold and Harris worked together at a local pizza restaurant.

In late 1998, Harris attempted to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps; however, his antipsychotic medication disqualified him. A journal entry mentioned that the Marine Corps “would have given me a reason to be good.”

In 1999, Harris’s journal had only one entry, which he ended with, “I hate you people for leaving me out of so many fun things.

A portion of the diversion program involved the writing of a letter of apology, to the victim of the van break-in. He described his disappointment with himself; and, though it seemed to be sincere, some parts of it could be interpreted as sarcastic. That, along with an essay regarding his anger-management skills, satisfied both authorities and his parents. Once the diversion program had been completed, all charges were dropped. He and Klebold were released, on February 9, 1999.

At some point, later, Harris and Brooks Brown had a reconciliation of the friendship. And, purportedly, on April 20, 1999, mere minutes before the shootings, Harris and Brown ran into each other, outside the school. Harris told Brown to go home, because he liked him.

Together, beginning in early March, 1999, and ending the morning of April 20, 1999, Klebold and Harris recorded more than four hours of videotape, depicting dress-rehearsals of the planned attack. Also, they filmed supply runs, thoughts and feelings on life, and a display of their cache of firearms, knives and bombs.

Part of the transcript from the event:

“I can see my reflection in his blood…”

“There’s a lot of fucking cops. Come on, let’s go get a couple.”

“No.”

“Come on, let’s go!”

“No. I’m done.”

{More to come in upcoming post…}

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *