Scott Beigel, Aaron Feis and Chris Hixon died while saving other during the Parkland massacre, and these heroes will be celebrated at the ESPY Awards. Get to know more about these brave men.
1. The three slain coaches will be awarded Best Coach at the 2018 ESPY Awards. The horrific tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida claimed the lives of seventeen students and staff. Yet, the brave actions of Scott Beigel, 35, Aaron Feis, 37, and Chris Hixon, 49, saved so many more. These three coaches, cut down during the Feb. 14 massacre, will be posthumously awarded the Best Coach award at the 2018 ESPYS on July 18. In addition to their work on the field, these men will be honored for “their immeasurable bravery in the face of danger and for their ultimate sacrifice to protect the lives of countless students,” said Alison Overholt, vice president and editor in chief of ESPN The Magazine, per ESPN.
2. Aaron Feis died while using his body as a shield. “It is with great sadness that our football Family has learned about the death of Aaron Feis,” the MS Douglass football team’s official twitter account wrote in the wake of the shooting. “He was our Assistant Football Coach and security guard. He selflessly shielded students from the shooter when he was shot. He died a hero and he will forever be in our hearts and memories.” Aaron was a MS Douglas High School alumni, graduating from the school in 1999. He was also the junior varsity coach and college recruiting coordinator as well. He leaves behind a wife and a daughter, according to SEC County.
3. Scott Beigel was killed while getting students to safety. Scott, a geography teacher and cross-country coach, was shot by the gunman after unlocking his classroom door and letting students in to hide from the shooter. “I had thought he was behind me, but he wasn’t,” Kelsey Friend, one of the students Scott let in, told the Sun-Sentinel. “When he opened the door, he had to re-lock it so we could stay safe, but he didn’t get the chance to. He was in the doorway and the door was still open and the shooter probably didn’t know we were in there because he was lying on the floor. If the shooter had come in the room, I probably wouldn’t be [alive].” Scott, a Long Island, NY native, studied at the University of Miami and worked as a counselor at Starlight Summer Camp in Pennsylvania.
4. Chris Hixon died while attempting to disarm the shooter. Chris Hixon, the school’s athletic director and wrestling coach, was one of the first people to confront the shooter, according to the Miami Herald. Upon first hearing the sound of gunfire, the Navy veteran jumped into a golf cart and raced towards the source. “We are all a little bit better for having known Chris,” Frank Valliere, a former co-worker, told the Herald. “He took students into his arms and into his house. He put others in front of himself in everything he did. He would tell us to cheer up and smile right now.”
The three coaches who sacrificed their lives to save students in the Feb. 14 mass shooting in Parkland will be posthumously honored at the 2018 ESPYS with the Best Coach Award. pic.twitter.com/UNHkZlKh89
— ESPN (@espn) June 13, 2018
These three are making history. Previously, the Best Coach award has gone to coaches strictly for their work on the field, and past recipients include such iconic sports figures as Phil Jackson and Bill Belichick. However, in the wake of their sacrifice in the face of certain death, the ESPYS are breaking from tradition to honor three men who truly embodied what it means to be a coach.