Former Harrisburg Principal Inspired to Combat Mental Illness
Something good can come from tragedy when shattered lives are mended. The shooting at Harrisburg High School is evolving into that type of story.
Mason Buhl, the Harrisburg teen that wounded former Principal Kevin Lien was not given jail time for his actions. Lein understands that the incident was not something personal.
“This was an attack on the office and on authority. There was also some desperation about things he couldn’t control in his life. I was really pleased to hear (Buhl) mention at the sentencing that he wanted to prove to everyone including me that he could be a positive and productive member of society. I know he will. I definitely know that will happen.”
As shootings continue to happen around the nation, Lien sees a common symptom and hopes to be a part of the cure.
“I’ve been really hypersensitive to all these shootings that have happened in our country since that time. If you read about the shooter, they have difficulties mentally. No one’s addressed it and no one has genuinely sat down and cared. We have to get to that place with kids. My hope is that maybe Mason and I can do something together to really raise that level of consciousness in our state and this region and really help kids before it gets to this place.”
Buhl pleaded guilty to attempted murder and was given a 25-year sentence that was suspended on the condition of being on supervised probation for 15 years. Prior to the sentencing, Lien says both lawyers in the case reached out and asked for his input which probably factored into Judge Brad Zell’s decision.
Lien is no longer Principal in Harrisburg after taking a new position as a Regional Administrator in Jefferson, Iowa.