Florida shooting: A survivor's story

From BBC - February 14, 2018

It was 14:30 when David Hogg heard the first shot.

The 17-year-old was in environmental science class at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Florida. The teacher had just passed out worksheets.

When he heard the bang, his classmates turned to each other. That sounded like a gun, they said.

The teacher closed the door. Within seconds, the fire alarm went off.

"We instinctively walked outside," says David. "We thought it was a drill."

As David's class walked towards the evacuation zone, they saw a "tsunami" of people running towards them. They turned and followed the crowd down the corridor.

What they did not realise was this: they were heading towards the shooter.

"A very heroic janitor stopped us," says David. "He said, 'Do not go that way - he [the shooter] is over there'."

After they turned round, Ashley Kurth - the teacher in charge of the culinary programme, known in school as Chef Kurth - funnelled the crowd into her own classroom.

"Within 30 seconds she easily had 30 or 40 people in there," says David. The lights were switched off.

One girl had a panic attack, and was given water. But, says David, most people were "relatively calm".

Then news of the shooting filtered through on their phones.

David's younger sister is also a student at Stoneman Douglas. "I knew she was alive - at least in the beginning," he says.

"I had a text from her, and a call. She was very frantic. I was petrified but I knew she was on the other side of the school [away from the shooter]."


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