Many are in despair after a shooting at Saint Louis High School

By Katherine Doan

Oct. 24, 2022

SAN JOSE, CALIF. — St. Louis High School students are terrified after a shooting occurred during class on Oct. 24, 2022. The result is disastrous, leaving many people injured and some killed.

St. Louis High School, a performing arts high school, was in session, and the students were all in their assigned classes. Messiah Miller, a student, heard the first shot. Messiah was in his algebra class at the time. He decided to ignore it, assuming it came from a nearby construction site and began reassuring himself and others around him. A minute later, an announcement for the school was broadcast over the intercoms, reaching every student in the building.

With a single sentence that may not have made sense to anyone outside of the school, but it did to the students and teachers. “Miles Davis is in the building,” the intercom exclaimed.

Students and teachers at the school began scrambling around the building, looking for a place to hide. The code indicated that there was an active shooter in the building. Messiah texted five people that he loved them before hiding himself in the classroom, one of whom was his own mother.

As the students waited for the shooting to stop, minutes turned into hours. Messiah’s classmates were terrified of the prospect of death. More gunshots were heard as the students sought cover, and they were getting closer. Footsteps could be heard before they came to a halt in front of their door. A shadow was attempting to open the door outside. The doorknob began rattling violently before the shadow vanished and the class fell silent.

Before the gunman was killed in a shootout with police, at least two people in the school were killed and seven others were injured with gunshot wounds.

For the high school, the once-quiet and peaceful school became a scene of violence and panic. Students had cowered under their desks, shaking, or jumped out the windows, unsure if they would survive and escape the scene unscathed.

The students and teachers at the school were evacuated and taken to a nearby grocery store parking lot to reunite with their loved ones. Following the shooting, many police officers surrounded the school on one side of the building. Many people prayed for the safety of all the students and victims.

Location of the shooting on a map of Missouri – St. Louis Visual and Performing Arts High School in Missouri. 
Credits – Wikipedia / Wikimedia Maps

According to Lt. Colonel Michael Sack, interim commissioner of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, the victims were a 61-year-old woman who died in the hospital and a 15-year-old girl who died at the scene. “Many of those injured had multiple injuries, including gunshot wounds,” Sack said. “When investigating the matter of the shooter, the police had identified the shooter as a former student of the school. That same student had died at a hospital.”

The shooter was a 19-year-old man named Orlando Harris. Harris was deemed an “isolated loner” at the school, which was a “perfect storm for a mass shooter.” Many of the authorities speculated that Harris was suffering from a mental illness. Jean Kuczka, a Physical Education teacher, and Alexandria Bell were among those killed.

Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary, acted in the aftermath of the tragic event. Jean-Pierre had echoed President Biden’s call for Congress to pass a ban on assault weapons, among other measures that would limit people’s access to firearms.

Sack urged anyone who is “aware of an individual who appears to be suffering from some kind of mental illness or distress” and is contemplating buying guns or causing harm to contact police.

The family of the deceased 15-year-old is in mourning. With the increased frequency of shootings, students are reminded to be cautious and to report anything they see that could endanger the school.

 Schools all over the world have been the target of threats and shootings, including Silver Creek High School, with a few close calls that were previously covered in the Raider Review.

Riana Ngo, a freshman, says, “I hope that never happens to our school or community. Having a weapon to defend ourselves and better things blocking the school doors are two ways to keep us safe.”

Katie Nguyen, a sophomore, exclaims, “These types of things, even when normal, are still very frightening. I would feel better if the school showed the students all of the exits that we could use if a shooter was on the opposite side of the school.

Many students of Silver Creek had received news of a possible shooting threat at the school on Oct. 28. Some students did not come to school because of the threat. The students were scared because of this, yet some decided to go to school, as they believed the school would protect them. The threat was not actually credible making students relieved of the news.

Silver Creek’s website has an application, ‘See Something, Say Something’, that allows people to report to the school if anyone has anything dangerous on campus. The application will enable students to share concerns with the school and the school would investigate the situation to make sure it wouldn’t happen.

Tags: #shooting, #devastating, #sadnews, #missouri, #highschool, #SaintLouisHighSchool, #silvercreek, #SCHS, #news, #St.LouisVisualandPerformingArts, #tragic, #grief, #mourning, #injured, #suggestions, #safety

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