Family, students, friends and coworkers are still, understandably so, searching for answers with this tragic death.
The event, however, was an opportunity for everyone to come together, and celebrate a life lost, that impacted so many.
Students, teachers, friends and family gathered in the stands of Manchester Stadium, at Cathedral Catholic High School, still somewhat in disbelief, as they honored the life of their beloved teacher and coach.
“If it didn’t hurt this bad, it would mean that I was not fortunate enough to know Mario as well as I did. It would mean I was not lucky enough to have known an incredibly passionate, dedicated athlete, coach, colleague and close friend for the past 23 years. My life is enriched simply by knowing him,” explained longtime friend, Dan Geiger.
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Fierro’s family members, lifelong friends and former coaches shared their favorite memories; many saying he was an incredibly passionate teacher. When you stepped into his classroom or on the field, you could always feel the energy.
“You knew when you really needed someone to lean on, someone to be there for you, you had Mario Fierro as not only a coach but as a friend. We’ll all miss him greatly,” student DJ Ralph said.
“It is especially hard being here today and being in the place that Mario loved the most and having to say goodbye. But despite all that, the legacy that Mario leaves to his students, and his student-athletes and our family will never be lost on us,” explained Fierro’s sister, Daniela Fierro.
Mario Fierro’s fiancé was also in attendance.
Fierro graduated from Cathedral Catholic in 2002 and returned to teach social science 14 years later.
The suspect in Fierro’s killing was previously in a relationship with the victim's fiancé, who sought and was denied protection from the court through a domestic violence restraining order.
He has since been arrested and will make his next court appearance in March.