‘Smeared classmate's blood and acted dead’: Texas school shooting survivors recall the dreadful day
When the 18-year-old gunman was roaming around Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, pumping bullets into innocent children and teachers, 11-year-old Miah Cerrillo was trembling with fear, as anyone would. She saw her classmates and teachers being massacred one by one.
Fearing that the shooter would now come baying for her blood, Miah saw her friend’s blood on the floor and immediately smeared it all over her body to pretend that she was dead in case the gunman returned from the adjoining classroom. She escaped alive, but was wounded.
Days after the horrific shooting at an elementary school, several survivors are coming forward to share their painful stories to give an account of how things unfolded that day.
Speaking to CNN, Cerrillo said she and her classmates were watching the movie "Lilo and Stitch" in a classroom shared by two teachers, Eva Mireles and Irma Garcia. The students were finished with their lessons when the teachers heard gunshots in the building.
One teacher went to lock the door, but Miah says the shooter was already there — and shot out the window in the door.
She said that it was all happening so fast — her teacher backed into the classroom and the gunman followed. She told CNN that he made eye contact with one of the teachers and told them, "Goodnight," before killing her.
Paramedic Angel Garza arrived on the scene at Robb elementary and found that his stepdaughter, Amerie Jo, was among the deceased. He learned the news from Amerie’s best friend, who told him the blood in which she was covered belonged to his stepdaughter.
A teacher at Robb elementary who did not provide her name to NBC News immediately ran to lock her classroom door when she heard gunshots down the hall. She said her students had practised active shooter drills for years.
She said: “They knew this wasn’t a drill. We knew we had to be quiet or else we were going to give ourselves away.” The teacher called the ordeal the longest 35 minutes of her life.
Edward Timothy, a second-grader at Robb elementary described the shooting sound to CNN as “popping … kind of like fireworks”.
A mother of a third-grader told Motherly, “I do not want my son to go to school in America anymore.”