Dylan Klebold & Eric Harris

What was the accusation?

On April 20, 1999, Dylan Klebold (age 17) and Eric Harris (age 18) perpetrated one of the worst mass shootings in U.S. history. On that day, the two teens entered Columbine High School (located in Littleton, Colorado), killed 13 people (12 students, 1 teacher), wounded more than 20 other people, and then turned the guns on themselves, ending their own lives at the scene. Just prior to the horrible event, Klebold and Harris videotaped their final goodbyes to family members and loved ones, apologizing for the shock and pain their actions would undoubtedly bring upon everyone.  

Key Apologia Strategies:

Transcendence, Provocation, Defeasibility




Eric [Harris]: “Say it now.”

Dylan [Klebold]: “Hey mom. Gotta go. It’s about a half an hour before our little judgment day. I just wanted to apologize to you guys for any crap this might instigate as far as (inaudible) or something. Just know I’m going to a better place. I didn’t like life too much and I know I’ll be happy wherever the f*** I go. So I’m gone. Good-bye. Reb…”

Eric: “Yea… Everyone I love, I’m really sorry about all this. I know my mom and dad will be just like”just f*****g shocked beyond belief. I’m sorry, all right. I can’t help it.”

Dylan: (interrupts) “We did what we had to do.”

Eric: “Morris, Nate, if you guys live, I want you guys to have whatever you want from my room and the computer room.”

[Dylan adds that they can have his things as well.]

Eric: “Susan, sorry. Under different circumstances it would’ve been a lot different. I want you to have that fly CD.”

Eric: (eventually) “That’s it. Sorry. Goodbye.”

Dylan: (sticks his face in the camera) “Goodbye.”


The basement tapes. (n.d.). a Columbine site. Retrieved from http://www.acolumbinesite.com/quotes2.php#420

Columbine High School shootings fast facts. (2017, April 5). CNN. Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/18/us/columbine-high-school-shootings-fast-facts/index.html

Columbine High School shootings. (2017, April 5). History. Retrieved from http://www.history.com/topics/columbine-high-school-shootings