Students Describe Alleged Ohio Gunman as “Sweet, Sad”

Posted February 28, 2012 by

Photo of annita-woz

Sweet? Sad? Gunman? which of these words doesn't belong here?

It's gunman.

We'd like to think that the person with the gun at the recent school shooting in Ohio was a gunman.  A full-grown adult.  Someone mature.  Someone who has no future.  Someone who is capable of taking full responsibility for his/her actions.

Then the shooting  would be horrible and sad, but never sweet and certainly not “juvenile” — which is actually what the alleged “gunman”  is.

I watched the press pictures during the coverage;  moms and dads hugging daughters and sons as they picked them up safe and unharmed (okay physically unharmed); Students with tear-stained faces.

Worse — the list of injured students. So far, two students have died. Three other students were wounded, and one is listed as being in critical condition.

So many lives changed.

This situation is not one of those documented behavior “incidents” for a student's file. This is not one of those cases where parents convene with teachers to create a fix-it plan. There is no going back for the young gunman.

If the shooter were your young juvenile,  he or she would soon be so much older than an immature high school student. And the consequences are so much greater than an immature high school student pays — sweet, sad or otherwise.

The shooter is a gunman and the gunman will not be disciplined by mom or dad,  but will be punished by a court of law. And that is the difference that one immature and angry teenage brain did not take time to think through. Parents discipline;  the court system punishes.

Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims and to the juvenile shooter in this horrible situation — and to the parents of all.

***Update: 1:27 p.m.: A third student has died as a result of wounds suffered during this school shooting.***


Annita Wozniak grew up in a large, imperfect family in the Midwest. "As adults we have the power to build children up or tear them down," she says about the challenges of being a responsible parent, "and we never know when what we say is going to be a defining moment in a child's life." Woz is a writer and child-grower living in the Midwest with her husband and their three inspirational children. She is always learning. You can visit her website at

Popular on Empowering Parents


Join our NEW Total Transformation® Learning Center!

Practical, affordable parenting help starting at $14.95/month BECOME A MEMBER TODAY!

Empowering Parents is the leading online resource for child behavior help


Parent Coaching Sessions

7.5 Million

Global Visitors

10+ Years

Helping Families