Sandy Hook Teacher Reveals How She Kept Students Safe During Fatal Shooting
What transpired at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Dec. 14, 2012, will be remembered as one of the deadliest mass killings in US history. For one of the school's faculty, it was a day when silence and prayers kept 15 students out of harm's way.
In a recent interview with NEWS10 ABC, grade 1 teacher Kaitlin Roig-Debellis said she and her students were conducting their regular morning meeting when the shooting occurred. Kaitlin immediately started hiding her 15 students as mass murderer Adam Lanza was reloading his firearm outside the class door.
"I said we need to get into our bathroom now," Kaitlin recalled. "I picked some of my students up. Put them behind the toilet where the flusher is. Stood two of my little boys on top of the toilet, put my tiniest student on top of the toilet paper dispenser, holding her with my hand."
The teacher still couldn't believe the implausibility of the whole situation, but she said she had to make the impossible possible because that was their only chance to survive the ordeal.
"My students were in the middle of hell and what they were hearing was so loud and so scary that they understood that when I said 'be quiet,'" Kaitlin mused. "They understood that silence meant we might stay safe."
Before barging into Sandy Hook, Lanza had shot and killed his mother at their Newton abode. Equipped with a high-powered Bushmaster M4 rifle and a Glock pistol, the assailant entered the locked vicinity by shooting through glass doors, as per Mail Online.
A total of 28 people died during the shooting, including 20 first-graders and six faculty members. Lanza committed suicide as initial responders flocked to the scene. Police reports revealed that Lanza was a loner and had a host of psychiatric problems. Authorities also discovered that the killer had a dossier of "virtually every mass murder" in the US.
The Sandy Hook tragedy has since garnered worldwide attention. It has pressured the US government to revisit the country's gun-control regulations.
In the meantime, a concerned father in Massachusetts has invented a glass panel technology that would take would-be assailants 12 minutes to shatter. Chris Kapiloff told WAMC that School Guard Glass can endure six shots from a .22-caliber handgun, six shots from a 9-MM handgun and 30 shots from a 5.56-MM assault rifle.