Belgrade security guard hailed a hero after school shooting

In a tragic event that shook the entire nation, nine lives were lost in a school shooting in Belgrade by a teenage gunman, including those of the long-time security guard, Dragan Vlahovic, and eight students. As the community grieves and tries to come to terms with the deadliest school shooting in Serbia‘s recent history, Vlahovic is hailed as a hero for his selfless sacrifice in shielding students from the attacker.

Vlahovic was a popular figure at the Vladislav Ribnikar Elementary School, known for his gentle and caring nature. Parents, such as Suzana Stojicic, reminisce about how well he knew each student and ultimately became a protective figure for them. At a makeshift shrine in front of the school, a hand-drawn portrait of the Belgrade hero is simply inscribed with the words, “Our Hero.”

In the aftermath of the tragedy, Milan Nedeljkovic, the president of Belgrade’s Vracar district where the school is situated, revealed that the security guard was among the first victims. Vlahovic didn’t hesitate to put himself in harm’s way, and his actions might have prevented even greater devastation. Following the incident, parents and students showed their appreciation for Vlahovic by sharing heartfelt tributes across social media.

Serbian actress Milena Vasic also expressed her gratitude to Vlahovic on Instagram for years of dedication and service. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic paid his respects to Vlahovic, mentioning that the security guard had been amicable with the 13 year old suspected shooter, further highlighting his connection with the students.

As the nation tries to make sense of this horrific event, Andrijana, the mother of two Vladislav Ribnikar schoolboys, expresses her sorrow and frustration, saying that this tragic incident reflects the unfortunate state of the society they live in. In the memory of the victims, and security guard Dragan Vlahovic, the community hopes to find strength and unity to overcome the heartache of this immeasurable loss.

Belgrade security guard hailed a hero after school shooting | News by Thaiger
Vladislav Ribnikar Elementary School in the Vračar municipality of Belgrade, Serbia.

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With a Bachelor's Degree in English, Jenn has plenty of experience writing and editing on different topics. After spending many years teaching English in Thailand, Jenn has come to love writing about Thai culture and the experience of being an ex-pat in Thailand. During long holidays, she travels to North of Thailand just to have Khao Soi!

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