Kentucky school shooting victim’s mother says daughter called her as she died

Posted at 1:41 PM, Jan 26, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-26 15:41:06-05

BENTON, Ky. — Bailey Holt’s cell phone rang incessantly, but the 15-year-old didn’t answer.

A mass shooting had just started at her Kentucky high school. Bailey’s mother panicked at hearing the news and kept trying to reach her daughter, but to no avail.

Finally, Bailey called her mom back. It was one of the final acts of her young life.

“She called me, and all I could here was voices, chaos in the background,” her mother Secret Holt told WKRN. “She couldn’t say anything, and I tried to call her name over and over and over, and she never responded.”

Bailey died at Marshall County High School on Tuesday. Another 15-year-old, Preston Cope, later died at a hospital.

By the end of the rampage, 16 other people had been shot — including Bailey’s first boyfriend, who was shot in the face but survived, Bailey’s parents told WKRN. The young couple started dating six months ago.

After the mass shooting, buses took surviving students to another school, where parents waited. Secret and Jasen Holt waited for Bailey to walk off one of the buses. But she never did.

The ‘perfect daughter’

Though she was only 15, Bailey already knew she wanted to be a labor and delivery nurse, her family said.

Jasen Holt recalled driving his daughter to school Tuesday morning and kissing her goodbye for the last time.

“She was perfect in every way,” Jasen Holt told WKRN. “She was an angel here on earth. She was a perfect angel.”

Authorities haven’t identified the 15-year-old suspect, who is charged with two counts of murder and 12 counts of first degree assault.

Bailey’s mother said she’s praying for him and his family, too.

“Whatever that kid had going through his mind, I don’t know,” she said. “But if he needed a friend, I know she would’ve been a friend to him and talked to him about anything he needed, because that’s just the kind of person she was.”