Tate Myre, 16, has been described as a leader, an awesome friend and a great brother. His life was cut short when police say a 15-year-old gunman opened fire at the school. Tate Myre’s father is working to ensure his son’s legacy will live on.
William “Buck” Myre spoke to Local 4 about the loss and shared how his family is trying to move through the heartbreak to bring good to others.
Watch an extended version of the interview in the video player above.
It started like any other Tuesday. Sheri Myre got up early to feed her boys’ breakfast and pack Tate’s lunch before getting him out the door for school.
“So, it was just your typical morning,” Buck Myre said. “She actually started his car for him that day too.”
A few hours later, while on a conference call, Buck Myre heard police sirens coming from the area near Oxford High School.
“I got off my conference call and my wife, Sheri, called and said, ‘Did you hear what happened?’ And I said, ‘No.’ And she said, ‘There’s an active shooter at the school,’” Buck Myre said. “I was texting Tate, I kept calling him. Sheri was doing the same thing. No response. You know, we were kind of freaked out. We were kind of in panic mode.”
Buck and Sheri Myre raced to get to a staging area set up near the school. But in a sea of faces, there was still no sign of Tate.
“We’re seeing all Tate’s buddies and we’re asking them if they’ve seen Tate and nobody had seen him,” Buck Myre said. “It was an empty feeling. I typically would say, give my wife a hug and say, ‘Everything’s gonna be OK.’ But I didn’t Because I had a feeling that it wasn’t.”
Authorities believe just before 1 p.m. that Tuesday afternoon, 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley, opened fire inside Oxford High School -- killing four students and injuring seven other people.
Deputies rushed Tate Myre to a hospital but he died in the patrol car on the way there.
“We found out at Meijer, you know, they called the four families into the manager’s office and, and told us the news. All I remember was my wife saying, ‘He was my baby.’ That was the first thing out of her mouth, she just kept repeating it, you know, so. Yeah, it was horrible. It was obviously the worst day of our lives,” Buck Myre said. “So we left Meijer, and we, no respect for what we just went through, and we’re being swarmed and we just got in our truck and went home. Right, and just cried all night. We cried ourselves asleep. Got up, cried. I don’t know how much sleep we got that night. Right. It was horrible. It was a, it’s just been, just. I don’t even know how to explain what our family’s feeling or going through. It’s just the worst pain anybody could ever imagine.”
Buck and Sheri Myre faced the harsh reality, their family would never be the same.
“So, we’re all a puzzle piece. Right? In this family puzzle and you know, there’s this piece that was taken out of the puzzle and it was thrown away and in that piece will never be there again,” Buck Myre said.
An unimaginable loss. Buck said it’s a feeling that’s hard to put into words. Tate, or “Taters,” as they called him -- was Buck’s wingman. The youngest of three boys and the baby of the family.
“He was awesome. He cared about everybody. He was wise beyond his years,” Buck Myre said.
Buck and Sheri Myre spent a lot of time volunteering at Oxford High School and helping with the football team, which Tate loved being part of.
Buck said eventually their sadness turned to anger. They felt betrayed.
“Tate wasn’t protected. The other three weren’t protected. The other seven that got shot weren’t protected. We’re angry that our son wasn’t protected,” Buck Myre said. “I am angry at the school. It happened at the school. There’s some things that didn’t go right that day. I’m angry at that day and I’m angry at the school ‘cause Tate’s never coming home. Never. And we will never get to see him again, never get to give him a hug. Mom will never get to have her mornings with him.”