Woman hugs girl near the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Photo: Mark Wilson / Getty Images
In the wake of the school shooting in southern Florida yesterday, stories of heroes who rose to the occasion to protect their students and classmates are being shared across the country.
Read the about the heroes — from a football coach who shielded his students from gunfire to a teacher who hid her class in a closet — from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
Football coach shielded students
The assistant football coach and school security guard Aaron Feis stood in front of students, protecting them while the shooter gunned him down, says the football team.
"He died the same way he lived -- he put himself second."— Denise Lehtio, high school spokeswoman
Teacher hid her class in a closet
Melissa Falkowski, a journalism teacher at the school huddled 19 students in a closet while gunfire rang in the halls. She and the students all survived. Falkowski told NBC News that some of her students were "hysterical" while she tried to ensure their safety until SWAT could escort them out of the building.
"This is the worst nightmare that could ever happen to you."— Melissa Falkowski told CNN
Janitor ushered students to safety
An unnamed school janitor guided students away from the shooter and into a classroom where they hid until the building was cleared. Student David Hogg said they were only about 100 feet away from the gunman.
"There was a janitor that thank God stopped me and all of my fellow students from going in that direction, towards the shooter."— Hogg said to KTRK