Slain North Carolina student gets Purple Heart, Bronze Star

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A University of North Carolina student who was killed when he tackled a gunman who opened fire inside a classroom has been posthumously awarded the highest military honors.

Riley Howell, a 21-year-old Army ROTC cadet, was awarded a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star.

The Charlotte Observer reports Waynesville Police Chief William Hollingsed and Haywood County Sheriff Greg Christopher on Wednesday presented Howell’s family with the medals, which were provided by Thomas Matteo, president of the Purple Heart Society.

Riley is credited with saving lives during the April 30 attack that also killed 19-year-old student Ellis R. Parlier and wounded four others.

Authorities have charged 22-year-old Trystan Andrew Terrell with murder, attempted murder and other offenses.

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