Community honors Dix Hills native killed in Florida school shooting

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HUNTINGTON -

A Dix Hills native who died while protecting students in Parkland, Florida, was honored at Huntington Town Hall Wednesday during a vigil. 

The vigil was packed as family, friends and the community remembered Scott Beigel – who worked as a geography teacher at Stoneman Douglas High School. 

Last month, Nikolas Cruz confessed to killing 17 people inside the school on Valentine's Day with an AR-15. 

MORE: Long Island students take part in National Walkout Day

Witnesses said Beigel was shot and killed after unlocking his classroom door to let students hide from the gunman.

At the vigil, family and friends remembered Beigel for his sense of humor and dedication to his students. Beigel's parents said their son was a hero, not because of how he died, but because of how he lived.

"He was a terrific young man. He really was caring," said his mother Linda Beigel Schulman. 

"The one important thing is that tragedy will not define him. He will define that day. He will make that day about the kids going forward because that's what he believed in," said his father Michael Schulman. 

Beigel's family said his memory will live on through a memorial fund they've set up, which will help underprivileged children go to camp.

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