School Climate & Safety

West Point Posthumously Admits School Shooting Victim Honored as Hero by Classmates

By Evie Blad — February 20, 2018 2 min read
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The U.S. Military Academy West Point posthumously admitted Parkland, Fla., student Peter Wang to its class of 2025 Tuesday, honoring the Junior Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps member who died helping his classmates to safety during a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Feb. 14.

Wang was wearing his uniform the day of the shooting, classmates said, and he held a door open for his peers so that they could get out of the building. Seventeen people, including Wang, died in the shootings.

Two other members of the JROTC—Alaina Petty and Martin Duque, both 14—also died in the shootings. The Army honored all three students with its Medal of Heroism Tuesday, the Miami Herald reports. Wang was buried in his uniform, wearing the medal.

Wang’s relatives told the Sun-Sentinel that the 15-year-old had always dreamed of going to West Point.

“One of USMA’s priorities is to develop leaders of character who are committed to the values of Duty, Honor & Country,” the military academy said in a tweet. “Peter Wang’s actions on February 14 are an example of those principles & the academy honors his dream of being a West Point cadet with a 2025 letter of acceptance.”

“West Point has given posthumous offers of admissions in very rare instances for those candidates or potential candidates whose actions exemplified the tenets of Duty, Honor and Country,” the school said in a statement.

A WPLG reporter interviewed a student about Wang outside of his funeral Tuesday.

Photo: Photos of JROTC member Peter Wang, sit among candles at a memorial to victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting in Parkland, Fla.--Evie Blad, Education Week.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Rules for Engagement blog.