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Arapahoe High School shooting victim loses her fight for life

Fox News brings tragic word that Claire Davis, the 17-year-old Arapahoe High School student shot in the head at point-blank range by shotgun-wielding Karl Pierson, died on Saturday afternoon.

“It is with heavy hearts that we share that at 4:29 p.m. this afternoon, Claire Davis passed away, with her family at her side,” the statement on Littleton Adventist Hospital’s Facebook page read.

“Despite the best efforts of our physicians and nursing staff, and Claire’s fighting spirit, her injuries were too severe and the most advanced medical treatments could not prevent this tragic loss of life. Claire’s death is immensely heartbreaking for our entire community, our staff and our families.”

Davis was apparently an entirely random target of opportunity for Pierson, who didn’t know her at all.  She was the only victim of Pierson’s aborted shooting rampage, which was clearly intended to be more extensive – he set off one of the three firebombs he was carrying, and wore a bandolier of shotgun shells – but was halted after just 80 seconds by the intervention of a sheriff’s deputy who had been assigned to the school.  Cornered by the deputy, Pierson took his own life.

There would doubtless have been more victims without the swift and courageous action of the deputy, but one was too many.  It was a miracle that Claire Davis survived that shotgun blast.  Just about everyone who learned of her struggle for survival hoped for another miracle.  From the L.A. Times:

Since the shooting, the community has rallied around Davis, with Twitter users taking up the hashtag #PrayForClaire.

About 500 students held a candlelight vigil last Saturday for Davis outside the school, where they had inserted flowers into a chain-link fence to form the message “4 CLAIRE.”

Earlier Saturday, members of Millbrook Equestrian, hosted a day of activities in honor of Davis, who was active in the horseback riding community, according to the Denver Channel’s website.

The announcement of Davis’ death comes just two days after students were allowed back on the Centennial, Colo., campus for the first time since the shooting to retrieve belongings.

According to the hospital’s Facebook page, a public celebration of Claire’s life will be announced later. The hospital will continue to accept cards for the Davis family in the “Cards for Claire” box at its main entrance.

Prayers for this young woman and her family, along with the community that will mourn her loss, and do all it can to honor her memory.

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