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US 'Our entire community is changed forever': CA shooting victims face a new reality

17:40  15 november  2019
17:40  15 november  2019 Source:   abcnews.go.com

Off-duty officers were the first responders to the California high school shooting — because they were dropping off their own family members for school

  Off-duty officers were the first responders to the California high school shooting — because they were dropping off their own family members for school The first responders reported to the scene at approximately 7:40 a.m., shortly after the first shots rang out, and began treating the gunshot victims.Two students were killed, and three were left injured in the shooting at Saugus High School in Santa Clarity Valley, which is north of Los Angeles. The 16-year-old gunman was also taken to the hospital in critical condition after attempting to take his own life after the shooting. The entire incident unfolded over 16 seconds, law enforcement officials said.

forever ': California shooting victims face a new reality originally appeared on abcnews.go.com. PHOTO: Students are evacuated from Saugus High School onto a school bus after a shooting at Our community lost two young people yesterday, and our hearts are broken over this tremendous

Students at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, California , say they're facing a new reality after a fellow student shot five classmates and them himself School shooting leaves 2 dead, shocks Southern California community . A male student at a high school in Santa Clarita shot five students

Megan Puettmann was in class Thursday morning when she heard the faint sound of gunshots.

a man and a woman standing next to a car: A student reunites with her parents after a school shooting in Santa Clarita, Calif. © Sarah Reingewirtz/The Orange County Register via AP A student reunites with her parents after a school shooting in Santa Clarita, Calif.

Students and teachers alike were confused as the seconds passed without any announcements over the loudspeaker at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, California.

Then they heard more gunshots and even screams, she said. Panic and fear began to set in.

"We could hear kids crying," Puettmann, 17, who is the editor-in-chief of the school yearbook, told ABC News in a telephone interview Thursday.

After Saugus High School shooting, prayer unites a grieving community

  After Saugus High School shooting, prayer unites a grieving community A day that began with the shock of a school shooting in Santa Clarita ended in prayer for many families who gathered for vigils in the area. Standing before hundreds of people at Grace Baptist Church in Santa Clarita on Thursday night, Pastor David Hegg acknowledged that students and parents may be grappling with how to make sense of the shooting at Saugus High School, which left two students dead and three injured."We're not here to diminish the pain that we feel. We're not here to anesthetize it," he said. "We're also not here to put God on the stand.... We're here to be reminded that we're not alone."The violence started at 7:30 a.m.

(MORE: ' Our entire community is changed forever ': CA shooting victims face a new reality ). The school district holds shooting trainings, though "we prayed that we would never need it," Kuhlman, the deputy superintendent, said in a letter to the community on Thursday.

' Our entire community is changed forever ': California shooting victims face a new reality . Students at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, California , say they're facing a new reality after a fellow student shot five classmates and them himself

The school was placed on lockdown and the students in Puettmann's classroom began barricading the door with desks and chairs. Then they waited silently in the dark classroom for what felt like forever, she said, until police arrived and evacuations began.  

Slideshow by photo services 

"It's just scary because I didn't know if my friends were OK," Puettmann told ABC News. "We weren't getting updates ... We didn't know anything for an hour and a half." 

Santa Clarita shooting: Some fear active shooter training at schools can bring its own form of trauma

  Santa Clarita shooting: Some fear active shooter training at schools can bring its own form of trauma When gunfire erupted in the Saugus High School quad Thursday morning, students had mere seconds to react. They sprinted and threw themselves in a ditch for cover. They hid in closets, locked and barricaded doors with desks. And some readied for a possible fight, arming themselves with scissors or a fire extinguisher.

(MORE: Police seek motive in California school shooting that killed 2, left suspect in 'grave condition')

A 16-year-old student had taken a gun from his backpack and opened fire in the quad of Saugus High School. He shot five of his classmates, killing at least two, before taking the gun to his head and pulling the trigger, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

The whole shooting lasted about 16 seconds, authorities said.

The alleged gunman was taken into custody and was last reported to be at a local hospital in "grave condition" from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, authorities said.

a group of people standing in a parking lot: Students are evacuated from Saugus High School onto a school bus after a shooting at the school left two students dead and three wounded, Nov. 14, 2019, in Santa Clarita, California. © Mario Tama/Getty Images Students are evacuated from Saugus High School onto a school bus after a shooting at the school left two students dead and three wounded, Nov. 14, 2019, in Santa Clarita, California.

A 14-year-old boy and a 16-year-old girl died from their gunshot wounds after arriving at the hospital. A 14-year-old girl, a 15-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy were also shot but survived, authorities said. The names of the victims have not been released.

(MORE: Parents, students 'shaking and crying' after California school shooting)

Puettmann said she wants pages of the upcoming school yearbook to be in memory of their slain classmates. The editor-in-chief said she was already planning to dedicate a section of the yearbook to the nationwide issue of gun violence in schools, but now wants to do something more in-depth that "spreads awareness and helps students somehow."  

a group of people standing on a sidewalk: Students are escorted out of Saugus High School after reports of a shooting, Nov. 14, 2019, in Santa Clarita, Calif. © Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Students are escorted out of Saugus High School after reports of a shooting, Nov. 14, 2019, in Santa Clarita, Calif.

There have been nearly 70 shooting incidents at schools across the country this year alone, and more than 400 in the last decade, according to data collected by the Center for Homeland Defense and Security at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California.

“Our entire community is changed forever," Puettmann told ABC News. “It's not going to be OK.”

More U.S. children die in mass shootings at home than at school -study .
Three out of four U.S. children and teenagers killed in mass shootings over the past decade were victims of domestic violence and generally died in their homes, according to a study   released on Thursday by the gun control group Everytown.While the specter of school shootings looms darkly in the minds of American parents who remember massacres in Newtown, Connecticut; Parkland, Florida, and around the country, the group's review of shootings from 2009 through 2018 found that far more children were killed in their own homes.

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