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Student Thanks Heroic Teacher Who Hid Her During Terrifying School Shooting

On February 14, as students began to pack up and get ready to go home, a gunman opened fire at Marjory Stonemason Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Students and teachers ran for safety. Sadly, 17 were killed, including Aaron Feis, a 37-year-old football coach and security guard who used his own body as a shield to save the lives of others.

Feis wasn’t the only hero that tragic day.

After the chaos died down a little bit on Wednesday, student Emma Dowd shared how language arts teacher Melissa Falkowski saved her life – as well as the lives of 18 other students – by hiding them in a closet when the shooter opened fire.

“Melissa Falkowski is an amazing educator who deserves praise for what she did,” Dowd said.

“I had multiple panic attacks while locked in the closet with 19 other people for numerous hours. She reiterated many times that I would be safe and she won’t let anything happen to me.”

Dowd knows Falkowski well – she serves as the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, of which Falkowski is the faculty advisor. Dowd said her teacher went out of her way to make sure she was okay, even though she herself was terrified too.

“She constantly checked up on me and kept me calm even when there were nearly 160 of us in the library after all the classes got searched,” Dowd said. I’m eternally grateful for strong and caring educators like her. She not only cared for me, but also the 160 kids in the classroom with us along with her other faculty.”

Several other students backed up Dowd’s story and shared their own experiences from that horrific afternoon.

“This was my teacher,” Delaney Tarr said. “I was in that closet. having to feel that fear and see all those people think they’re going to die is something no person should experience.”

Falkowski says teacher training helped her keep her wits when the shooter opened fire so she could protect the students in her charge.

CULTURE Student Thanks Heroic Teacher Who Hid Her During Terrifying School Shooting
‘I’m eternally grateful’

ByJessica BrownPublished on February 15, 2018 SHARE TWEET COMMENT
On February 14, as students began to pack up and get ready to go home, a gunman opened fire at Marjory Stonemason Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Students and teachers ran for safety. Sadly, 17 were killed, including Aaron Feis, a 37-year-old football coach and security guard who used his own body as a shield to save the lives of others.

Feis wasn’t the only hero that tragic day.

After the chaos died down a little bit on Wednesday, student Emma Dowd shared how language arts teacher Melissa Falkowski saved her life – as well as the lives of 18 other students – by hiding them in a closet when the shooter opened fire.

“Melissa Falkowski is an amazing educator who deserves praise for what she did,” Dowd said.

“I had multiple panic attacks while locked in the closet with 19 other people for numerous hours. She reiterated many times that I would be safe and she won’t let anything happen to me.”

Dowd knows Falkowski well – she serves as the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, of which Falkowski is the faculty advisor. Dowd said her teacher went out of her way to make sure she was okay, even though she herself was terrified too.

“She constantly checked up on me and kept me calm even when there were nearly 160 of us in the library after all the classes got searched,” Dowd said. I’m eternally grateful for strong and caring educators like her. She not only cared for me, but also the 160 kids in the classroom with us along with her other faculty.”

Emma Dowd
@emmaedowd
Being one of those 19 kids for numerous hours was beyond surreal. Melissa Falkowski, the teacher, was one of the few that kept me calm and safe. I’m beyond thankful for educators like her. https://twitter.com/shannonrwatts/status/963944512413487105 …

3:14 AM – Feb 15, 2018
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Several other students backed up Dowd’s story and shared their own experiences from that horrific afternoon.

“This was my teacher,” Delaney Tarr said. “I was in that closet. having to feel that fear and see all those people think they’re going to die is something no person should experience.”

Falkowski says teacher training helped her keep her wits when the shooter opened fire so she could protect the students in her charge.

No one should ever have to experience the horrors that these students, teachers, and faculty faced that day, but we are thankful for heroes like Falkowski and Feis who shine a light in the darkness and prove that compassion and humanity will win in the end.

Help us honor these brave heroes! Share this!

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