EUGENE, Ore. — Students at West Albany High School returned to class for the first time Tuesday since one of their classmates was arrested. They say the ordeal will only make them stronger.
Like many parents, mother Holly Gastorf hugged and kissed her daughter one last time before dropping her off at the school Tuesday night.
“So I was nervous, very nervous,” Gastorf said.
But seeing the increased police presence made it easier. Last week police arrested 17-year-old Grant Acord after one of his friends told his mother about Acord’s alleged plan to bomb the school. The mother immediately alerted police.
“I am so thankful to her, her son and her family. He’s the real hero in this. Want to make that clear,” said Susie Orsborn, West Albany High School Principal.
While students are still in shock that they were so close to a potential massacre. They say they have no hard feelings toward Grant.
“Kind of punish myself for not starting a conversation with the kid or reaching out, get him into discussions and more groups,” said Sawyer Reed, School President.
“I’m definitely going to take into consideration other people. Maybe if Grant didn’t feel excluded as much, he would have been driven to do this,” said senior Renee Lafountain.
The principal did meet with the student who tipped off police. She says he’s a junior and was taking classes with Grant. She says she hopes his actions sends a message to students at all schools in the nation to speak up if you have a feeling something isn’t right. Investigators say it certainly saved this school from what could have been a horrific tragedy.