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‘A Hero Every Day,’ Stoneman Douglas Community Remembers Coach Aaron Feis

Hundreds of people filled Church of the Glades in Coral Springs Thursday to honor slain Stoneman Douglas High School assistant football coach Aaron Feis.

Feis, 37, was killed in the Feb. 14 mass shooting at the school. Witnesses say he was shot as he ran at the shooter and pushed students out of harm’s way.

LISTEN: ‘A Hero Every Day,’ Stoneman Douglas Community Remembers Coach Aaron Feis

Ever the coach, Feis’s memorial service opened with the singing of the national anthem.

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Hundreds of people filled Church of the Glades in Coral Springs to honor slain Stoneman Douglas High School assistant football coach Aaron Feis on Feb. 22, 2018.Credit Peter Haden Edit | Remove

“He was a big bear of a man, with a heart as big as his frame,” said Pastor George Callahan.

Flanked by 17 flickering candles, family, friends and players shared stories about Feis.

They spoke of the hard-working family man who sometimes drove the team bus and did landscaping to make ends meet. Feis was nevertoo busy to make time -- for anybody.

Coaching colleagues remembered the jovial coach with the wise smirk. He’d give players a ride home when they needed one — in his beat-up, 30-year old pickup with broken windshield wipers.

Eight Stoneman Douglas football players in their black-and-maroon home jerseys carried Feis’s casket.

Stoneman Douglas football players await the procession of slain Stoneman Douglas assistant football coach Aaron Feis at Church by the Glades in Coral Springs, Fla. on Feb. 22, 2018.
Credit Peter Haden / WLRN
Stoneman Douglas football players await the procession of slain Stoneman Douglas assistant football coach Aaron Feis at Church by the Glades in Coral Springs, Fla. on Feb. 22, 2018.

Players in Douglas Eagles’ jerseys filled several rows at the church, and some players from neighboring schools came wearing theirs.

Broward Sheriff Scott Israel was Feis’s friend. Feis was loved by students and players because they knew he had their back, Israel said.

And nobody ever called him Aaron, Israel added. Like Lebron or Jordan, it was always just “Feis.”

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Football players put the casket in the hearse at the funeral for Aaron Feis, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School security guard and assistant football coach who died while shielding students from the shooter on Feb. 14, 2018.
Charles Trainor / Miami Herald
Football players put the casket in the hearse at the funeral for Aaron Feis, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School security guard and assistant football coach who died while shielding students from the shooter on Feb. 14, 2018.

Mourners leave the funeral for Aaron Feis on Thursday.
Charles Trainor / Miami Herald
Mourners leave the funeral for Aaron Feis on Thursday.

Aaron Feis
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Aaron Feis