BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Thousands of parents anxiously waited outside Taft Union High School for several hours Thursday morning, many looking up to see a Sheriff's office helicopter landing in the nearby football field.
The S.W.A.T team armed in full gear, filed out of the helicopter and walked into one of the school's buildings.
Minutes later, a gate opened and the first group of students and staff was released, bringing a wave of relief to family members.
Students ran into the arms of parents, many in tears.
Teacher Rosemary Day had to be escorted by a deputy and her son Jacob who was also a student.
Day said she was in a meeting about school lock downs when the shooting occurred, and the issued a real lockdown.
"I ran into the closet, closed the door and when I heard a helicopter outside I knew something was wrong," said Day.
Many students said the knew the shooter and described him a quiet and shy.
"He kept to himself and sometimes tried to make friends but he was often picked on by other students," said the shooter's friend Jacob Day.
Parents and students said they will spend the night in each other's arms grateful that their loved one was not hurt and praying for the victim and his family.