The leader of a large Lutheran congregation near Columbine, Don Maxhausen took a controversial stance on Eric and Dylan in the wake of the attacks. Rather than describing the boys as tools or manifestations of Satan, Marxhausen saw the boys as having “hate in their hearts and weapons in their hands.” When Tom and Sue Klebold approached him and begged him to discreetly perform a funeral for Dylan, Marxhausen agreed, and used the opportunity to humanize the Klebods to the press and give them some much-needed closure and redemption during the service for their son. However, he paid for his compassion, Cullen says; a year after the massacre, Marxhausen, once one of the most “revered” ministers in Jeffco, was forced out of his congregation and unable to find a job.
Don Marxhausen Character Timeline in Columbine
The timeline below shows where the character Don Marxhausen appears in Columbine. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 22: Rush to Closure
Chapter 24: Hour of Need
The service is conducted the Saturday after the shooting. Just fifteen people attend. Tom tells Marxhausen that “what you see in the papers was not my son.” Those attending the funeral... (full context)
...they bury Dylan, his grave will be defaced, so they elect to have him cremated. Marxhausen asks the Klebolds’ attorney how he should respond when the press inevitably is made aware... (full context)
Chapter 49: Ready To Be Done
...to daily life—even shopping is difficult for her, as her name is instantly recognizable. Don Marxhausen, who remained close with the Klebolds, is forced out of his job and unable to... (full context)
Epilogue: Apocalyptic Dreams