Leander High School's online student-run newspaper

The Roar

Leander High School's online student-run newspaper

The Roar

Leander High School's online student-run newspaper

The Roar

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Living Memorial to Dylan Memorial

By The Roar Staff

It’s hard to describe the sense of loss in our hallways since the death of Dylan Horn, a beloved teacher and friend. Students and faculty learned of the news Tuesday morning, Feb. 15, 2011.

Information in the obituary tells of his birth date, Dec. 28, 1978 and his death date Feb. 14, 2011. He was born in Austin, Texas, and died Monday following an unexpected illness. He is survived by his wife, Mariah  Horn and two beautiful daughters, Riley Elise and Bailey Emory. His parents are Danita Horn  and David and Eunice Horn.. He is also survived by a brother, Drew Smith Horn and a sister, Denava Brooke Horn. He served in the National Guard.

What the obituary doesn’t say is how his life impacted so many. We have the unique honor of getting on the record things that others may not know.  His was a life to be celebrated, and we proudly embrace the opportunity to let the world know exactly who Dylan Horn was and the legacy he left behind.

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In his AVID classroom on Thursday morning, Feb. 17, students are discussing ways to honor Dylan at his funeral by dressing alike, maybe wearing their AVID shirts. One student mentioned that Mr. Horn would probably love it if they all wore ridiculous Hawaiian shirts, a favorite of his. However, they all understand the seriousness of the occasion and are busy brainstorming exactly what they want to do.

This classroom has a sense of well-being. It’s a place where kids are comfortable and thoughtful. It’s a safe place because Dylan Horn let kids be themselves and openly celebrated that fact. AVID students made a commitment when learning of his death: they would be there for each other, and they would stand unafraid, as he had taught them.

One thing is certain, since Tuesday, there has been an outpouring of love that somehow gets us through the disbelief. Many students knew him very well and many wish they had known him better. Outside his classroom door and down the hallway, students have created a memorial wall as a tribute with messages and photos. This legacy will be presented to his wife and children.

Everyone who saw Dylan got a glimpse of his gorgeous smile. Those he worked with closely know his dedication to kids and his passion for teaching.

What follows are the wonderful comments and stories that tell who Dylan Horn was, how he viewed the world of education and how he will be remembered:

From AVID Seniors

Mr. Horn, you have changed the way I view school and taught me what it means to really succeed. You were and still are like a father to me. You’ve taught me so much about life in the four years you’ve been my AVID teacher. You believed in me even when nobody else would. I’m always going to remember the legacy you’ve left behind. —Marisa Santistevan

Mr. Horn was a father to many at school. He was there for many when no one else was. He taught us so much and now he lives on through us. The only thing I wished I did was see him when he got back for the couple of days he was here and tell him that I love him. —Javier Godinez

Mr. Horn is the most amazing man I have ever known. His influence on me made me a better person. He taught me to be strong no matter what I encountered and to never be afraid to conquer my fears. I am blessed to have met such a great man, and the bond I had with him can never be duplicated with anyone else. He made our class a family and I thank him for that. He is my father and he made my life wonderful. I love him and I will never forget Dylan William Horn. —Shanice Lafitte

Mr. Horn was one of the greatest men I have ever met. He was passionate about teaching and loved each of us as if we were his own. I thought of him as a second dad and I’m eternally thankful for all he has done for me. He never gave up on us and was willing to fight for us. Mr. Horn’s legacy will continue to be carried on by his seniors. He is greatly missed and deeply loved. You’re forever in my heart. —Kaitlan Morales

Did Mr. Dylan Horn really pass? Physically, yes, but his spirit will live for an eternity. Mr. Horn was a father figure to us all. Every time we were in his presence, we would immediately possess a sense of comfort, as if nothing else in the world mattered because we were with him. His wisdom and prosperity have transformed our lives. A few of the many regrets I have in my life is not telling Mr. Horn how much I loved him and not thanking him for supporting us freshman year. Mr. Horn, thank you for all the hard work you put into our AVID class and the unconditional love you instilled within us. We love you. —Lorenzo Morfin

There are some people in life you will never forget, and Dylan Horn was one of these people to many. He was a great man and a friend to all, but he was more than just a friend to me. He was also a mentor, a role model, and basically another father. He will be greatly missed and loved by all including myself, and we should never forget the legacy he left behind. —Bradford McCloskey

Mr. Horn was one of the best teachers, the god of AVID, and a father to most. To most, he was a great man and teacher. But to the AVID kids, he was so much more. I can’t even begin to talk about what he means to us. Because of him, the AVID seniors are a family, and we’re all so confident. You will be fondly missed. And as always, “We are not afraid.” —Aryanna Calapa

Mr. Horn, you taught us a lot of things. Some things that I’ve learned from you is that if you’re in trouble and don’t understand, ask for help; there’s no shame in asking. Help someone who needs it and give back to the community. Also be confident in the decisions that you make. You were the best teacher that I ever had and will ever have! —Ashley Collins

There are so many things that you could say about Mr. Horn, but there would not be enough paper in the world. He was a great man and has helped me with so many things I learned so much from him, like never give up and don’t let others decide your path. He was a bright, spirited man and never had a dull moment around us. I am glad I had the privilege of having him as a teacher and a friend. He will be missed greatly.– Jessica Alcala

Mr. Horn is my hero and always will be. He taught me to never give up and to always move forward no matter how hard. We will always keep his legacy going and he will always be here for us. I love you, Mr. Horn, and you are greatly missed. —Nico Campos

Mr. Horn, you were the most amazing father not only to your kids but to me as well. You have helped me so much with school and everything else in my life. I love you so much; you will always be in my heart. I’ll miss you so much. I was so lucky to have known you for my high school career. You’re the best! I will never give up and I’ll make you proud, I promise! —Meagan Nejtek

Mr. Horn impacted my life in a big way. He had taught me to never give up on my dreams and that you can do anything you set your mind to.–Enrique Sanchez

From Fellow Staff

Dylan Horn has positively imprinted so many places in my memory. I remember his family and mine sharing beautiful, precious time on Lake Travis, and whilling away the happiest hours on Quarter Horse Trail. I recall the kindest compliments on my health and achievement in the Teacher’s Lounge, and how funny it was to go from mingling on front porches to chatting in classroom doorways. His accomplishment is a generation of kids academically and morally improved, teachers inspired, friends from every facet of his life to remember him always, and a beautiful family to carry on the legacy. Dylan has, for years now, regularly impressed each version of my world with warmth and sincerity, and for all of my years to come he will be earnestly missed. —Shannon Lloyd

When I remember Dylan, I will remember his positive energy. I will miss him and I will continue to pray for his family. —Lisa Garcia

I remember Dylan as being very generous, warmhearted, funny, and very sincere to others. He will be greatly missed by all who he touched. May God bless his family and keep them safe. —BJ Usher

One of my fondest memories of Dylan was working on a Cub Scout project with him. I asked for his help, and he was all over it. He jumped in with materials and ideas… no job or request was too small for this guy who loved helping people. —Brad Mansfield

Dylan, forever you will sit upon my shoulder and rest your boot upon my heart, nudging me to become a better man and a better friend. — Chris Tarbet

From Students

Mr. Horn was, is, and always will be one of the greatest inspirations to me. He pushed us, made us strive to always be better, and to always keep going, to never give up. He taught us life lessons just as much as he taught us academically. You were and are our father, Mr. Horn. You will always be missed and forever loved. —Quentin Rivera

Highlights From The Memorial Wall

Dylan, a bright and shining star, is now watching over LHS. Your warm smile, sense of humor, and positivity will be missed. Thoughts and prayers are for your family. You are truly one of a kind. —Melissa Wood

Inspiration to many, friend to all, my favorite teacher…  so many positive memories. He always took time for students; he was like a second dad. I regret not telling him how much he impacted my life and how he made my freshman to senior year so much better. —Axy Petrie

You were amazing. You had a heart of gold. You were kind, sweet and funny! You were my favorite teacher. —Jaycee Corbin

Dylan Horn will live and teach eternally in the minds and hearts of all who knew him. I will miss his great smile. —Vicki Talley

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  • C

    Camille StreetFeb 19, 2011 at 8:17 pm


    Thank you for your friendship at Leander High School as well as your leadership, and inspiration for your students, fellow teachers, and administrators + family, friends, and community.

    More personally, Dylan, thank you for the exemplary example that you exhibited for all to see regarding how an honorable gentleman, husband, father, family member, friend, teacher, soldier, and neighbor should live his life. You are one of the greatest men and finest educators that I have ever known! You will be missed; however, when I look up and see the sunrise, sunset, clouds and rainbows, I will think of you.
    Dylan, I am also so sure that I will see you in Heaven some day, my friend. My prayers now are for your sweet family.

    Leander High School students and staff are so determined to be strong in order to remain dedicated in this difficult time and to honor your memory.
    Isn’t that how you would want it? Wouldn’t you want us to honor your life and then “move on” to live our lives to perform even greater actions for humanity … to ultimately honor your presence in our life?

    I know you and our Lord will be smiling down on your memorial on Sunday. May our Lord, Jesus Christ, bless those attending and those not able to attend the service to honor your life. ILY, Dylan. The Leander community will watch after your sweet family. Blessings to your immediate family and friends. I will miss you so!

    –Mrs. Street (Camille Pittman Street)