Logan Cole remembers West Liberty school shooting one year later


West Liberty-Salem High School student Logan Cole was shot one year ago today in the chest in a school restroom.

Logan remembers much of that day and the shooting.

“I remember that I was going to a mock trial competition in the morning and I remember going to school and we were about to leave on the bus and I remember walking into the bathroom,” Logan said in an exclusive interview with the Springfield News-Sun. “And there Ely was with the gun.”

RELATED: West Liberty-Salem still healing 1 year after school shooting

Ely Serna faces multiple felony charges in adult court for his alleged role in the shooting, including two counts of attempted murder. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity and is due back in court on Feb. 13.

Logan also recalls how the suspect was apprehended by school administrators and school staff members tended to his wounds and prayed for him.

Logan was hit by two shotgun blasts that put about 100 pellets in to his body, including one in his heart. After several surgeries and about two weeks in the hospital, he’s now mostly recovered physically, even playing a season of soccer.

“The prayers really helped a lot in that moment,” Logan said.

All for a reason

Logan carries the weight of the day with him all the time. He still wrestles with emotions.

“One thing I really learned through all of this is forgiveness and that’s kind of weird to say considering what was done to me … I don’t know when I forgave,” Logan said. “I’d say I’ve probably forgiven Ely but I mean that also doesn’t mean I don’t still get angry about it.”

MORE: West Liberty school shooting victim has 100 pellets in his body

Forgiveness is a continuing struggle, he said.

“I go back and get angry about it again and I have to forgive him again,” Logan said. “And it’s kind of a process. But I feel like looking back on the day, it’s kind of a bummer what happened. It’s definitely not fun but I think that it was all — I think that was all for a reason.”

Logan believes more people would have been hurt if he hadn’t run into the suspect in the restroom. Logan said he talked to Serna but declined to talk about what was said because of the ongoing legal case.

“I’m not thankful that the situation happened but I’m thankful that I went in there at the same time for the outcome that there was,” he said.

MORE: West Liberty school shooting victim to be honored

His actions earned him noticed by the U.S. Security Service in Dayton. They arranged a meeting with Logan and Vice President Mike Pence during a visit to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in May.

“Logan’s heroic actions were deserving of the honor,” resident agent in charge Kevin Dye said.

Community support

After the shooting, Logan said the community embraced him.

“It was huge,” he said. “I definitely wasn’t expecting all that to happen but from the first moment — so many people came to visit me in the hospital and the fundraisers that were done for us and it was — it was all pretty overwhelming,” he said.

But as much as the community support affected Logan, his actions following the shooting also affected the community.

RELATED: West Liberty school shooting victim Logan Cole returns to school

“Logan is definitely a Christian young man,” resident Janet Mally said. “I don’t know him personally but he is an exceptional young man.”

“He’s been very forgiving,” resident Jack King said. “Most people would say, ‘Yes, it’s tough to forgive, but I can tell he believes in God. His faith is what did it. It’s the way he was taught and he comes from a good family.”

Logan has shown his appreciation to the community by donating $22,000 from fundraisers held in his honor to the school district toward a new field house.

Inspired many

Logan said the events of Jan. 20, 2017, should be remembered.

READ: West Liberty seeks mental health help after school shooting

“I definitely believe it should not be forgotten,” Logan said. “I think that forgetting it won’t do us any good. Like a lot of the things that happened in our past, we can learn from it.”

Logan’s actions and perspective of the shooting has inspired many, West Liberty-Salem Superintendent Kraig Hissong said.

“Logan is an amazing individual who has handled this whole situation far better than anyone expected,” he said. “He has been strong the whole time.

Many people can learn how to deal with adversity by watching Logan, Hissong said.

“He is an amazing example of how to handle a situation like this,” he said. “You don’t see a lot of anger or him asking, ‘Why me?’ It’s perseverance.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

Trump to headline Ohio GOP fundraising event in Columbus

President Donald Trump will make his second political trip to Ohio in less than a month when he headlines the Ohio Republican Party’s state dinner on Aug. 24. Ohio GOP Chairwoman Jane Murphy Timken announced Wednesday that the president will speak at the party fundraiser where tickets start at $250 per person. Trump held a rally in Delaware County...
Frontier adds nonstop flight to Florida location from Columbus
Frontier adds nonstop flight to Florida location from Columbus

Frontier Airlines is adding a flight from the Columbus International Airport to popular vacation destination West Palm Beach, Florida. The new twice-weekly flight will start in November, and operate seasonally, ending in the spring, a Frontier spokesman told the Columbus Dispatch. The route could become permanent if demand calls for it. BIZ BEAT: Popular...
Black Americans aren’t buying Omarosa’s turn against Trump
Black Americans aren’t buying Omarosa’s turn against Trump

For years, Omarosa Manigault Newman stood at Donald Trump’s side, making her deeply unpopular with African-Americans who see her as a sellout for aligning herself with a president who has hurled one insult after another at black people. The Central State University graduate’s falling out with Trump and her decision to call him a racist...
Clark County Municipal Court cases
Clark County Municipal Court cases

CASES CALLED MONDAY INCLUDED: Robert Lee Cordle Jr., 34, of 909 Emery St., turn and stop signal, dismissed. Michael E. Farmer, 36, of 604 Tibbetts Ave., theft, guilty, 180 days jail, pay costs and $128 restitution. Nicholas C. Hart, 33, of Medway, possession of drugs, dismissed. Roscoe A. Kidd Jr., 53, of 1269 S. Yellow Springs, domestic violence,...
7-Eleven offering buy one, get one free Slurpees this week
7-Eleven offering buy one, get one free Slurpees this week

7-Eleven stores are celebrating back-to-school season with a week of buy one, get one free Slurpees. The convenience store chain is running a Two Cool for School deal that offers one free Slurpee with the purchase of one from Aug. 13 to Aug. 19. The deal, which is all day, everyday throughout the promotion period, can be used for a Slurpee of...
More Stories