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He made it through the Columbine High college mass shooting, but a 20-year battle with drug addiction that followed, one that Austin Eubanks had actually publicly said started with pills offered to lull his ache from bullet wounds suffered in the 1999 rampage, has now expense him his life, his family members said.
Eubanks, 37, was discovered dead in his home in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, ~ above Saturday morning. If an autopsy is being conducted to determine the reason of death, his family members says they already know what killed him.
He "lost the battle with the very disease he combated so hard to assist others face," his family members said in a statement.
AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews
In this April 25, 1999 file photo, shooting victim Austin Eubanks hugs his unidentified girlfriend during a community wide memorial business in Littleton, Colo., because that the victim of the shooting rampage in ~ Columbine High college the previous week.
Routt ar Coroner rob Ryg told abc affiliate terminal KMGH-TV in Denver the Eubanks passed away sometime so late Friday or at an early stage Saturday. He said no proof of foul beat was uncovered in his home.
Eubanks had actually seemed to it is in in recovery from his addiction, speaking to numerous people across the country about the ravages that opioids and the "emotional pain" he said doctors were failing to treat.
"As you can imagine, we are beyond shocked and also saddened," his family"s statement reads.
On April 20, 1999, Eubanks was in the library at Columbine High institution in Littleton, Colorado, v his best friend, Corey DePooter, wait for other classmates to audioeditorfree.com to lunch, as soon as teenage gunmen Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris, launched what at the time was the worst mass shoot in U.S. Background to take place at a high school.
"A teacher ran v the very same door the we had actually just entered, yelling because that everybody to get under the tables, the somebody had actually a gun," Eubanks recalled in a 2017 Tedx Mile High Talk. "I remember how I felt: ns was confused, ns was afraid, ns felt sick and also I was vulnerable. And also just minutes later, i was play dead under a table alongside a swimming pool of blood. I had just been shot and I observed my finest friend murdered right in prior of me as we to be huddled together waiting for aid to come."
Eubanks, then 17, was shot in the hand and leg in the rampage that declared the resides of 12 students and a teacher, and ended through the gunmen acquisition their very own lives.
"I frequently think earlier to mine pain the day," he claimed in the Tedx Mile High talk. "And if ns were to price it top top a ache scale, my physics pain would have actually been a 3 or a 4, and also that was likely the an answer I offered when i was asked. Yet my emotionally pain to be an absolute 10. I was in aaudioeditorfree.comny beyond comprehension. However that was never ever asked, the was never talked about.”
Within an hour ~ fleeing the library, he was provided sedatives in a hospital to relieve his pain.
"I was addicted prior to I even knew what to be happening," Eubanks said, adding that before the job of the strike he had never drank alcohol or smoked marijuana.
In a 2016 interview v KMGH, Eubanks said he didn"t seek help for his seeks until 6 years after ~ the Columbine attack, and that it was another six years prior to he audioeditorfree.comt sober.
"I was 29 years old before I found lasting sobriety and also I think it take it a level the maturity and also willingness on my part to do what it takes and, for me, I had actually to adjust pretty much everything around my life," he told KMGH.
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In countless speeches and also interviews, Eubanks provided his story of survival and also recovery to accumulate others nationwide.
“I think the it"s really important that -- not as survivors that trauma however survivors of seeks -- speak out and they share their story,” Eubanks said. “Just because you never know when your story is walk to readjust the life of somebody else.”
Eubanks" death follows the noticeable suicides of two students who survived the Feb. 14, 2018, massive shooting in ~ Marjory Stoneman Douglas High school in Parkland, Florida, and the noticeable suicide the a father who young daughter was killed in the shooting rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, ~ above Dec. 14, 2012.
Calvin Desir, 16, and also Sydney Aiello, 19, who both made it through the Parkland shoot that eliminated 17 people, were discovered dead within a main of each various other in march from obvious suicides, public official said.
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On march 25, Jeremy Richman, 49, whose 6-year-old daughter, Avielle, was amongst the 26 children and educators eliminated in the shooting at Sandy Hook, supposedly took his own life.
Richman showed up last year on alphabet News" "10% Happier" podcast, telling hold Dan Harris that losing Avielle was "infinite heartbreak."