Cassie Bernall

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Cassie René Bernall
Cassie Bernall.jpg
Born (1981-11-06)November 6, 1981
Wheat Ridge, Colorado, U.S.
Died April 20, 1999(1999-04-20) (aged 17)
Columbine, Colorado, U.S.
Cause of death Gunshot by Eric David Harris
Resting place Golden Cemetery, Golden, Colorado
Occupation Student
Known for Murder victim

Cassie René Bernall (November 6, 1981 – April 20, 1999) was a student killed in the Columbine High School massacre at age 17.

Initial reports suggested that Eric Harris asked if Bernall believed in God moments before she was fatally shot. She was reported to have answered "Yes".[1] This story led to Bernall being presented as a martyr by some Christians, and served as the inspiration for several songs, including Michael W. Smith's "This Is Your Time"[2] and Flyleaf's "Cassie;"[3] the video for "This Is Your Time" includes a short clip at its beginning of Bernall talking about her beliefs.[4]

In the months following Bernall's death, her mother, Misty Bernall, released the book She Said Yes: The Unlikely Martyrdom of Cassie Bernall. In this book Misty describes her daughter's turbulent teenage life, spiritual conversion and martyrdom.

Most examinations of witness testimony state that Bernall was not asked anything before she was shot.[5][6][7][8] According to witness Emily Wyant, who was hiding under the same table as Bernall, Eric Harris said "peek-a-boo" before shooting Cassie, while Cassie continued to pray silently.[8]

It has been documented that a similar exchange took place between Dylan Klebold and Valeen Schnurr, another student who was wounded in the library that day. Some have speculated that this exchange was mistakenly attributed to Bernall.[5][6] Richard Castaldo was also quoted in the press as attributing a similar exchange to Rachel Scott just before she was shot, but Castaldo subsequently denied that Rachel had had a similar exchange with her killer. He also denied saying anything suggesting such a conversation.


  1. ^ Cullen, Dave (1999-05-15). "I Smell the Presence of Satan". Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  2. ^ McCall, Michael (1999-11-29). "Songs of Experience: Christian singer looks at life's troubles and offers inspired work". Nashville Scene. Weekly Wire. Retrieved 2007-03-20. 
  3. ^ Portell, Paul (2005-02-01). "Flyleaf, Flyleaf EP Review". Jesus Freak Hideout. Retrieved 2007-03-20. 
  4. ^ Smith, Michael W. ""This Is Your Time" official music video". Reunion Records. Retrieved 2015-01-06. 
  5. ^ a b Watson, Justin (2002). The martyrs of Columbine. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 117–128. ISBN 978-0-312-23957-2. 
  6. ^ a b Luzadder, Dan; Kevin Vaughan (1999-12-14). "Biggest question of all". Rocky Mountain News (Denver, Colorado: The E.W. Scripps Co.). Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  7. ^ Toppo, Greg; Marilyn Elias (2009-04-13). "10 years later, the real story behind Columbine". USA Today (Gannett Co. Inc.). Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  8. ^ a b Cullen, Dave (1999-09-30). "Who said "Yes"?". Retrieved 2010-10-03. 

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