Wednesday, January 22, 2014

scary memories

Yesterday, there was a shooting at Purdue University. School shootings have been getting so out of hand in the past couple of years. While every incident is different, such as the one at Purdue appeared to be between the gunman and the victim. But others are not so isolated, like Sandy Hook or Virginia Tech. I'm not going to write my personal views on what we should do to avoid these situations because I honestly don't want to get political on such a controversial topic like that on here, but I'm going to write about my two experiences I've had.

I was twelve years old, in seventh grade during the first incident. I wanna say 2006. The biggest school shooting I had ever heard about at this point was at Columbine High School. I never thought anything like that would happen to me, especially at my school. My middle school is in a good neighborhood, and was connected to the high school right next door. 

I was in 7th grade pre-algebra, during 8th period. We were working on homework problems in groups. We were all distracted by this. Thats kind of the scary part, because I never realized what happened until after the fact. While I was working on my group algebra equations, my teacher was working with something very different.

A student in my class had brought a gun to school with him. 

He didn't have it loaded, but during class the bullets he had with him fell out of his pocket, and my teacher saw and realized what they were. He saw that she noticed and he started begging her not to say anything. She started talking him down, saying she wouldn't, while she called in to report it under her desk. Before we knew it, they student was taken out of the class, and the school was on lock down. Now, who knows what his intentions were with bringing a gun with him? He claimed self defense while walking home, but as I said, my school was in a good area. Another kid could have threatened him as well, but I really don't know what he was intending on doing with it. It's a scary though to think- my class could have all been victims. I might not even be here writing this post today. My school could have had news flooding it with what happened, and how many were shot. I'm thankful it never even came close to that.


The second incident I had, happened last year when I was still 19, and it was early 2013. I worked on campus last semester at Starbucks. We have three locations on campus that are all run together. I worked at the one in the student union. Around, 5 or 6, the students from one of the other locations all came in. Obviously, we were all confused since their store was supposed to be open for another couple of hours. One of my friends working there simply stated that the building got evacuated and the upper levels were on lockdown because of someone with a weapon. This was scary to think of, since twenty minutes before... I was leaving a class I had in that building.

Soon, I got a campus alert to my phone and on my email stating that there was someone with a gun at the building, but they weren't sure if he was still in that building. They said to be careful and report anything suspicious. Being in the largest student hang out on campus, we were obviously scared that this gunman could come here next. The night went on and eventually we got an alert saying he must have left because the other building was opened back up, and no longer on lockdown. 

Then the fire alarm started going off in the student union. Fire drills weren't that uncommon at that time of night, but it was scary with the previous circumstances. We asked one of the union workers what was going on, and he had no idea. They are always made aware of fire drills that go on, because they typically have to tell students to get out. We were ushered out into the cold, while the police searched the building. About twenty minutes later we were allowed to go back inside and continue on.

Now, this story actually has a more light-hearted and very relieving ending. The gun that student saw and reported was actually a student from the police academy who forgot to take off their fake plastic training weapon. The police academy is connected to that building, so putting two and two together, it wasn't that unusual. Still, everyone was thankful the girl reported seeing it. Who knows what would have happened if it was real, and she just assumed.

I feel that my experiences kind of show that, this kind of situation can happen to anyone. I'm not constantly scared that my classroom will be the next victims of a shooting, but it is something has been happening more frequently in the past couple of years. I think it's best we all educate our selves on the fact this could happen, and what you would do if it happened to you. 

Has anyone else had an experience similar or like this?

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