Profiles: Red Lake Victims

Brief portraits of some of those who were slain in the Minnesota school shooting:

Daryl Lussier, 58

The grandfather of Jeff Weise and one of his first two victims, Daryl Lussier was a lifelong tribal police officer known around the reservation by his nickname, "Dash."

"You said 'Dash' and everyone knew who you were talking about," said Ed Naranjo, a retired Bureau of Indian Affairs officer who once worked with Lussier.

Lussier had four adult children and two under age 10, Naranjo said. He was well-liked and respected around the reservation, he said, helping maintain order during periods of turmoil and unrest.

"He was that kind of individual who could calm a very hot situation," Naranjo said.

Tribal officers were nervous in the late 1980s, Naranjo said, when the tribe switched from Bureau of Indian Affairs protection to contract officers. Lussier helped his colleagues who were upset by the change.

"There was that song at the time — 'Don't Worry, Be Happy,"' Naranjo recalled. "Everybody was feeling kind of down, and he would just walk around singing that."


Derrick Brun, 28

Security guard Derrick Brun was remembered as a gentle spirit who loved the children he watched over at Red Lake High School, his alma mater.

Brun was a former police officer and was taking classes to be an emergency medical technician, said a cousin, Nancy Richards.

"He was just an all-around good guy," she said, adding that he was the type of person who would open his door to someone who needed a place to stay.

Brun, the youngest of five children, had started working as a school security guard last fall, Richards said.

Brun was divorced and had a daughter, Courtney, who died a couple of years ago at the age of 21/2 from a medical condition.

"That's the only comfort the family has, is that he's with Courtney now," Richards said.


Alicia White, 15

Alicia White was a girl with lots of friends, but her life wasn't always easy.

"She was really a sweet little girl," said Wendy Johnson, whose daughter, Ashley Morrison, was friends with Alicia. "She never hurt anybody and had no bad things to say about anything or anyone."

The teenager was the oldest of six children and lived with her grandmother, who was ill. But Alicia kept a cheery demeanor, playing basketball for the freshman team.

"She was nice," said Morrison, a junior. "She was so sweet. I rode the bus with her and I kept asking, 'Why did he shoot her?"'

Pastor Tom Pollock led a youth group that White belonged to. He said she helped her grandmother raise her younger siblings.

"She's really played the role of mother," Pollock said.


Thurlene Stillday, 15

Thurlene Stillday loved to tell stories.

"She always had something to talk about. You know, 'They did this over the weekend or they did that,"' said Sondra Hegstrom, who was two grades ahead of the freshman. "She had a lot of friends."

Thurlene came from a big family — she was one of four girls and a boy — and looked forward to doing good things in high school and beyond.

"She looked up to us because we were upperclassmen," Hegstrom said.


Chase Lussier, 15

Chase Lussier was a teenager with big responsibilities.

Students say he was helping to care for a son who had been born just months earlier. He tried to balance that with basketball, homework and time with his friends.

"He was a typical teenager," said Sondra Hegstrom, a junior who had known Chase since the two went to the Catholic mission school in Red Lake when they were youngsters.

"He loved his baby," she said.

And he might have been a hero. Some students say he pushed a girl out of the way before he was shot.