A petition has been started to give one Parkland hero a military burial.
Peter Wang, 15, died while holding the door open for his fellow classmates at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School so that they might escape the gunfire, the Sun-Sentinel reported. The freshman was wearing his Junior ROTC uniform at the time.
"He is so funny, caring and selfless," Peter's cousin, Lin Chen, 24, told the Sun-Sentinel. She said she was not surprised when she learned what he had done.
"He is so brave. He is the person who is genuinely kind to everyone," Chen said of Peter, who was hoping to attend West Point one day. "He doesn’t care about popularity. He always liked to cheer people up. He is like the big brother everyone wished they had."
Peter had two younger brothers, 5 and 11. His parents own a restaurant in Pompano Beach. They were too upset to talk.
"I feel the family can never be the same," Chen said, adding that the family had planned to celebrate Chinese New Year's eve together the day after the shooting.
Peter previously attended PenTab Academy in Miami Gardens from pre-kindergarten to second grade. Barbara Sharpe, the principal of that school, was devastated by the news of his death.
"He was a sweet, loving child … very eager to learn," Sharpe said, adding that the school's staff became close with the family because they owned a restaurant across the street.
"His parents were very supportive and involved in his education," Sharpe continued. "We still have pictures of him at our school. Our heart is hurting. We were devastated when we saw the name."
A petition has now been started calling for the government to give a full-honors military funeral to Peter for his courageous actions:
Peter Wang, 15, was one of the students killed in Florida this past week. He was a Jrotc Cadet who was last seen, in uniform, holding doors open and thus allowing other students, teachers, and staff to flee to safety. Wang was killed in the process. His selfless and heroic actions have led to the survival of dozens in the area. Wang died a hero, and deserves to be treated as such, and deserves a full honors military burial.
The petition has garnered more than 49,000 signatures since it was posted on Feb. 16. It needs 100,000 signatures by March 18 to get an official response from the White House.