Columbine

Columbine

by

Dave Cullen

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Columbine can help.

Misty Bernall Character Analysis

Cassie Bernall’s mother. After her daughter’s death in the Columbine shooting—which she believes to be one of martyrdom—she writes and publishes a book called She Said Yes: The Unlikely Martyrdom of Cassie Bernall, which will go on to sell more than million copies. Misty and her husband, Brad, are hailed as “blessed parents of the martyr” within their deeply religious community until two Columbine survivors—Emily Wyant and Val Schnurr—come forward to refute the story of Cassie’s martyrdom.
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Misty Bernall Character Timeline in Columbine

The timeline below shows where the character Misty Bernall appears in Columbine. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 13: “1 Bleeding to Death”
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
...as well as more and more policemen, continue to arrive at Columbine. Among them is Misty Bernall, mother of the Evangelical student Cassie Bernall. Realizing she cannot get close to the... (full context)
Chapter 18: Last Bus
Violence and Spectacle Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
...parents are both joyful and discouraged. Brian Rohrbough, father of Danny Rohrbough, abandons hope, but Misty Bernall—who has been reunited with her son, Chris, but still has no sign of her... (full context)
Chapter 19: Vacuuming
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Failure Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
Brad and Misty Bernall arrive home at about 10 p.m. They can see Columbine from their house, and... (full context)
Chapter 20: Vacant
Violence and Spectacle Theme Icon
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Failure Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
Brad and Misty Bernall return to the perimeter Wednesday morning, and ask the police whether anyone inside the... (full context)
Chapter 32: Jesus Jesus Jesus
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Media: Misinformation and Sensationalism Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
...anyone listening to their daughter’s story to go to church—especially young people. Soon, Brad and Misty Bernall are on 20/20 and Oprah. When Oprah asks them whether they wish their daughter... (full context)
Chapter 38: Martyr
Violence and Spectacle Theme Icon
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
...first officially designated Protestant martyr since the sixteenth century.” Their daughter’s story brings Brad and Misty Bernall “tremendous relief”—years ago, The Enemy had nearly taken their little girl. (full context)
Violence and Spectacle Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
Misty believes her daughter had been possessed by Satan three years earlier. Cassie had disturbing letters... (full context)
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Media: Misinformation and Sensationalism Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
As Cassie’s story continues to “mushroom” and Brad and Misty are hailed as “blessed parents of the martyr,” another student, Emily Wyant, knows the truth... (full context)
Media: Misinformation and Sensationalism Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
Telling Cassie’s story makes the loss of her daughter more “bearable” for Misty Bernall, and someone suggests she writes a book. Misty agrees, and a small Christian press... (full context)
Media: Misinformation and Sensationalism Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
Investigators get word of Misty Bernall’s book deal, and decide to alert her to the truth. Misty claims they told... (full context)
Chapter 41: The Parents Group
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Failure Theme Icon
Sue Klebold also writes apologies, and mails them directly to the Thirteen. Misty Bernall is moved by the letter she receives, and describes Sue Klebold’s act of writing... (full context)
Chapter 45: Aftershocks
Failure Theme Icon
Media: Misinformation and Sensationalism Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
In September of 1999, Misty Bernall embarks on a book tour in support of She Said Yes. The Rocky Mountain... (full context)
Chapter 53: At the Broken Places
Violence and Spectacle Theme Icon
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
...the world, and still hopes to one day interview Eric and Dylan’s parents. Brad and Misty Bernall moved out of Colorado. She Said Yes has sold over a million copies. Pastors... (full context)
Afterword: Forgiveness
Violence and Spectacle Theme Icon
Memory, Bearing Witness, Trauma, and Testimony Theme Icon
Media: Misinformation and Sensationalism Theme Icon
Religion: Escapism, Evangelism, Opportunism Theme Icon
...has since apologized to her, but it has taken her longer to forgive him and Misty Bernall than it took her to forgive the shooters. (full context)