A teenager who survived the shooting at Santa Fe High School on Friday tearfully recounted the horrific experience to reporters, saying she had an asthma attack and feared for her life during the massacre.
Dakota Shrader, a 10th-grade student at the Texas high school where at least eight people were gunned down, told KPRC that she heard several gunshots before hearing alarms and being told to evacuate.
"I was sitting in my classroom and I heard really loud booms, but I really didn't know what they were at first," Schrader told the station. "Then, I realized what they were when I heard screaming."
Schrader said that teachers immediately started telling their students to run, so she grabbed her friend and ran towards shelter where she had an asthma attack and called her mother.
"I was scared for my life, nobody should go through this," she said. "Nobody should be able to feel that in school. This is a place where we're supposed to feel safe ... it hurts my heart."
"What are we supposed to do when this happens?" she added, through tears. "Nobody knew what to do. All we did was run, there was nothing we could do but run."
Another young student who survived Friday's shooting told a reporter that she was not at all surprised by the attack.
The teenage girl, who is reportedly named Paige, was asked, "Was there a part of you that was like, 'This could not happen at my school?"
"No," she responded dejectedly. "It's been happening everywhere. I’ve always felt it would eventually happen here, too."
— LeAHHHHHH!!! 😱 🏳️🌈 (@leahmcelrath) May 18, 2018
By Friday afternoon, thousands of messages of support for the Texas high school, its students and the greater community flooded social media in wake of the tragedy.
Parkland shooting survivor and gun control activist Emma Gonzalez took to Twitter following the attack to express her solidarity with the Santa Fe students and also offer a rallying cry for change.
"Santa Fe High, you didn’t deserve this. You deserve peace all your lives, not just after a tombstone saying that is put over you," she wrote. "You deserve more than Thoughts and Prayers, and after supporting us by walking out we will be there to support you by raising up your voices."
Santa Fe High, you didn’t deserve this. You deserve peace all your lives, not just after a tombstone saying that is put over you. You deserve more than Thoughts and Prayers, and after supporting us by walking out we will be there to support you by raising up your voices.
— Emma González (@Emma4Change) May 18, 2018