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Columbine 25 years later: John Tomlin's old truck is a treasure for his family

"I was 11, John was 16 and then I have another brother who was 14 at the time," Ashley Glader said while remembering her oldest brother. In the 25 years since the shooting at Columbine High School, Glader says her family keeps John close to their hearts.

"Our faith really helped us get through our grief, especially in those beginning years, but we saw so much good come out of John's death... that it doesn't take away the pain, but it gives you some redemption for all of that suffering and heartache," Glader said.

Part of that strength she says came from the stories they heard about the kind of person John Tomlin was, even when he thought no one was watching.

"He worked at a tree nursery and there was a girl there who was trying to carry this really huge bird bath, 'Do you need help? I'll help you,'  'No, no I can do it.' So he turns and walks away, and he looks back and it's shattered into a million pieces, instead of ribbing her, he just went and helped her clean up. I think it's just those little things you know it can seem so insignificant but that meant the world to her, and she told us that after he died," Glader said.

As time passes, she says the hardest part for her family is knowing those stories will someday end.

The Columbine Memorial  CBS

"That's what you miss. You miss hearing anything new,  but when I do come across someone, I find out they knew John. I am just like what.? You want to get those new stories."

Their memories of him are now more precious than ever.

At 16, she says John's pride and joy was his truck and today, it is theirs. 

"He bought a Chevy pickup truck and it was beat up and broke down all the time, but Chevy actually restored it after he died. It looked amazing and it had everything on it that he had made a list of things he wanted to do to it," she said.

John Tomlin's truck Ashley Glader

Now, different family members often take it for drive a tradition she hopes will carry on for generations to come.

"It's a fun thing that I will get to pass down to my kids and my first-born son is named after my brother," Glader said.

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