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Stories of 4/13

Blotter Staff, Reporters

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Everyone has a story. The April 13 incident effected all of us, but the different perspectives from throughout the school captured the authenticity of the emotional stress that was experienced.

 

Uneasiness in a closet was the last thing junior Rachael Rutherford thought she would experience Friday. April 13 started off as an ordinary Friday for Rutherford. When fourth period came around, all of that changed. She was sitting at her computer listening to “Nowhere Man” by Bryce Vine and in her peripheral vision she saw her teacher Christina Faulkner ran past to grab her laptop. Rutherford took her headphones out and heard the intercom signaling a lockdown. Her teacher rushed her and few other students to a closet where the lights were off. With her mind on, and her heart racing Rutherford was afraid and panicked. “It wasn’t fear of what was happening, it was fear of what was not happening,” Rutherford said. “We had no idea about anything.  It was just plain fear, you could feel it in air. The uneasiness— I was shaking uncontrollably.” Later that day, Rutherford wanted to listen to music. She took out her phone, looked down at the Bryce Vine album and the events happened all over again. -Emily Owens

When class is held outside, most teenagers would expect to hear birds chirping, see blue skies, and feel warm weather. Junior Barrett Archibald heard kids screaming, saw swarms of cops with guns drawn, and felt terror from the track of New Albany High School as the school was put under lockdown on April 13. During fourth period, Archibald found himself on the track running 40’s for weightlifting. “We were all out there in our gym clothes on the football field when all of a sudden everybody started running out,” said Archibald. “We thought it was a fire drill, but we knew it was serious when cops started pulling up with their guns. It felt real.” Since he had dressed out for the class, Archibald’s cell phone was stuck in his locker leaving him without a way “to contact any of [his] loved ones in the building.” While Archibald explained that his experience was likely less frightening and intense than that of a student’s inside the building, the emotions were still all too authentic. “I felt so much confusion,” said Archibald. “I wasn’t scared at first because we thought it was a fire drill, but when people started talking about a gun I was nervous and didn’t know what to feel. It makes you think back to all the stories in the news and how you don’t think it’ll happen to you.” The experience left Archibald shaken and reflecting on how it opened his eyes. “This showed me how we could do stuff differently and take better precautions.”- Marley Wells

Friday the 13th is seen as the day where anything unpleasant and cruel could happen. Friday 13, 2018 was not an exception for sophomore Maria Leguizamo. Little did Leguizamo know that at around 10:45 she would be closed in on a room with two of her friends.“The feeling was horrible,” Leguizamo said. “I was terrified for my life. The girl next to me was sobbing and it was all so much to take in. I tried to act strong to not make matters worse, but it was very hard. Especially when you and your friends were just randomly shoved into a room.” After the incident happened and everyone was let out, Leguizamo had trouble processing what had happened. “I couldn’t breathe at all,” Leguizamo said. “My anxiety took over and I just couldn’t control it. I had one of the worst panic attacks I have ever experienced… I am just so glad that the nurse was right there to help me. Now everytime I pass through the office, I remember what happened and how bad things really could have been.” –Gabby Gonzales

Extremely confused after returning from Prosser, junior Mikayla Wilson saw kids running away from school and a bunch of police cars. At first, Wilson was calm knowing that if something was happening, her and her peers on the bus were safe, before she began worrying for her friends still in the building. “I think everyone handled the situation very well, but the school should have thought about how the students and teachers felt,” Wilson said, “Considering this complete accident caused everyone to fear for their lives and the school day went on ‘just as normal’ seemed a little inconsiderate to me.” Wilson was able to see all of her friends who hadn’t left school to ensure that they were alright and unharmed. She says the situation was scary but is definitely glad everyone was safe – Sydney Byerly

Hullabaloo occurred when College Prep Counselor, Mrs. McGuirk, was up in the the senior loft on Friday. Prior to the lockdown, she was discussing the FASFA with a parent and representatives from Ivy Tech Community College. “So we were just answering FASFA questions and I was on lunch duty, in the senior loft,” Mrs. McGuirk said. “So I kind of had two responsibilities on Friday.” Little did she know what was to come next: Mrs. McGuirk didn’t hear the initial announcement of the lockdown. “I had a student come up to me and ask me if I heard the announcement and I said, “No,” and I asked for what the announcement was and she said we were in a lockdown,” Mrs. McGuirk said. Upon hearing what the student told her, at the corner of her eye, students began running out of the cafeteria. On the radio, she heard a talk amongst the assistant principals about there being a lockdown, and she heard them say evacuate the students to a safe place. “So they said the auxiliary gym would be one of those places,” Mrs. McGuirk said. “So everyone who was in the senior loft, including the people from Ivy Tech, and the parent, went downstairs to the auxiliary gym.” Once they all walked down safely to the auxiliary gym, her instructions for the students were to line up against the wall and away from the windows. As she was assuring the students to stay calm, Mrs. McGuirk started intently listening to instructions on the radio. Once Mrs. McGuirk heard the announcement over the radio, concerning the lockdown being a false alarm, she was surprised. “I didn’t know that we had an announcement that would come over the intercom and I was relieved to hear that nothing had happened,” Mrs. McGuirk said. If the scene ran its course in another direction, Mrs. McGuirk would’ve branched out the same plan. “My immediate concern was to get students and our guests into safety,” Mrs. McGuirk. “My concern was where do we go, because I didn’t know what was going on in the building. Was it safe to go to the first floor? I saw everyone leaving the cafeteria, but when I heard on the radio, “You can take students to the auxiliary gym,” I knew we were okay to go down there.” -Tanner Burch

“One of the things that calmed me down the most was just knowing how well we had the room secured and that if anybody did come in that it was going to end there,” Junior Brock Harris recalled. During the false lockdown alert on Friday April 13th he was in his German classroom with 12 other kids. As he sat doing his daily language review, the lockdown alert came over the intercom. His teacher, Frau Seymour, ran to shut the door. Some of his classmates ran to the back of the class while others armed themselves with whatever they could, such as a stool or bat. They realized that it wasn’t a drill, especially since their teacher didn’t know about it, and started to barricade the door. Some of them got on their phones to check Twitter and see if anybody else knew anything. “It was all real to us, and we were confused and nervous about it, but I felt that our class was really prepared.”- Kami Geron

It was just another school day for sophomore Parker Page. He dragged his feet and his only worry was using the bathroom and making it back to lunch in enough time. On his way back from the restroom, an announcement sounded, “Lockdown, Lockdown.” Confusion is the only emotion he felt in that moment, he looked around and next to him was a girl he didn’t even know. By instinct, he took lead and pulled her along to a nearby classroom. As he hurried in, all he saw were girls crying and people frantically offering things to use in defense. There were few familiar faces but everyone in there had a newfound love for one another. He did what he always said he would do and barricaded the door with the help of another guy, whom he’d never met before. They both then stood in front of the door with books ready to throw at anyone who dared to enter. In the midst of this, the announcement sounded once more, letting students know this was a false alarm and nothing more. Parker could practically feel the relief amongst everyone in the classroom. No longer feeling safe, he and others left school and went about the rest of their day. But he couldn’t escape the memory of the fear he felt in that classroom. So many unfamiliar faces will forever be familiar to him now.- Kaitlyn Burdine

 

 

 

 

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Stories of 4/13