Surviving Santa Fe HS students share stories of terrifying moments of shooting

SANTA FE, Texas – The Santa Fe High School Class of 2018 was originally scheduled to have its baccalaureate service on campus Sunday.

In light of the deadly shooting that happened on Friday, the event was moved to a church.

Dozens of seniors were honored by family and community members as they walked across the stage of Arcadia First Baptist Church, but the joyous occasion was overshadowed by the tragic one that left 10 people dead and 13 injured.

Graduating senior Todd Penick lost several friends in the shooting. He spoke of hearing the fire alarm before hearing the shots.

“We just walked outside like it was a regular fire drill and, luckily, I saw my girlfriend so I went over and just started talking to her and we heard gunshots and teachers just started yelling 'run, run,'” Penick said.

Isabelle Laymance was inside the art classroom where the 17-year-old gunman opened fire. She told The Washington Post that she survived by hiding in a supply closet with seven other students.

“People were running out of the classroom and he was chasing out after them trying to kill them,” Laymance said.

Freshman Jonathan Fogle and his mother, Sheila, were at Arcadia First Baptist Church early Sunday for a church service. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott was also there.

Shiela Fogle said her son should have been inside the art class Friday but had made a prior arrangement with his art teacher.

“She said, 'All, after you finish your test, biology practicum, come in,” Sheila Fogle said. “And it would have been about 7:30 (a.m.). He would have been in the classroom.”

Because of that, Jonathan said, his life was likely spared.

Penick said that, while his senior year will forever be marked by tragedy, when it’s all put into perspective, he realizes he’s blessed.

“Honestly, I could care less about any, any award that I would have received or any achievements that I’ve had,” he said. “I get to go home tonight and I get to hug my parents around the neck and tell them that I love them, and some of these kids don’t get to do that.”