The Gift of an Angel

It’s been nearly two years since the day in December 2000 that I saw an angel. I think about her every day. She continues to bring me peace and to reassure me that my daughter Kelly is never far away and is in a most amazing place.

Kelly, my 16-year-old daughter, was killed in the library at Columbine High School in April 1999. Even as I write these words it still doesn’t seem possible. Kelly was a gentle little soul and for her to have died amid such hatred and violence, amid such evil is beyond belief.

It’s because of Kelly’s death that I happened to find myself at Columbine High School the week before Christmas 2000. Construction had begun on the new HOPE Columbine Memorial Library at the school. My husband and I were on our way home and he decided to swing into the parking lot and take a look at the progress on the new building. As I had just been at the site a few days earlier with some of the other families, I decided to remain in the car while he left to take a look.

The way he pulled into the parking lot, I suddenly found myself gazing up at the windows where the old library had been. I began talking to Kelly and praying to God that she was truly happy and at peace. Almost immediately a movement caught my eye and I realized there was a figure moving across the window of the old library. I knew instantly I was looking at an angel! There wasn’t a doubt in my mind. She was so clear to me. She was elegant and she was gliding or floating across the front of the building.

I was elated, overjoyed and very thankful!

It all happened so fast. I sat there wishing I had a camera and then realized I did. I reached down, grabbed the camera and got the window down, all the while trying to keep the angel in my sight. She had begun to lose her perfect shape and I quickly took the picture hoping I had caught some of her. She had stated out so perfectly one moment and then began to fade and was gone within 15 or 20 seconds.

I sat there smiling, thanking God and Kelly for their gift. I reviewed in my mind what had just happened…I saw an angel! I knew she had a flowing gown and flowing hair and I thought she had something in here hands; perhaps she was playing a flute or horn.

I knew this angel was an answer to my prayer. I felt she was sent to comfort me and bring me a message form my sweet Kelly, “I am here with you always Mom and I am happy and I am at peace.”

I felt such a sense of peace and so incredibly blessed to have been given such a gift. I wasn’t able to speak of the angel when my husband returned to the car and for the next few weeks I continued to replay the whole experience over and over in my head and my heart.

When I saw the photograph for the first time, I realized instantly that I had seen this angel before. Her halo was still visible just above her head. Her gown and hair flowed behind her as she glided across the front of the building. Her hands still outstretch before her as though clasping the star she held on my Christmas cards. She was the same angel that had brought me much comfort during the previous weeks, as I had been making Christmas cards using an angel stamp and markers. I had stamped and colored this same angel on my Christmas cards, during my lunch breaks and in the evenings over and over again.

Though the angel I saw at Columbine was fading quickly by the time I took the picture, there is no doubt in my mind that the same angel on my Christmas cards was seen tot comfort me again that day and bring me a message from my dear Kelly Ann. That message filled my heart with joy and continues to carry me through each and every day.

Look at this picture now I can see yet another message…

Rest assured this space where pure evil walked not so very long ago has been heaven blessed and truly touched by an angel.

I believe our world and the next are not all that far apart. The angel God sent to bring me a message that day was amazing! I believe that not only was she a gift to me at that moment but because I was able to take her picture and can share here I believe she is truly a gift to us all. I know she carries with her a message of peace and hope for everyone.

One final note – A week or two after getting my picture back I was headed into Mass. As is usually the case I was having one of my many conversations with God and asked that He somehow let me know it would be okay to share this angel He had sent to me. I really wanted to tell my story and share the picture I had taken. Well, I didn’t have long to wait…Mass began and the first Responsorial Psalm was read,

“In the sight of angels I will sing your praises Lord!”

I had my answer.

Dee Fleming