At least the students had their cellphones.
As the tragic school shooting played out Wednesday at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, students grabbed the one tool that could help them communicate with the outside world.
As young people huddled in fear inside closets and and locked-down classrooms, they were able to text family and loved ones about their welfare.
They also could send out messages on social media. Commenters were able to give updates to those barricaded in and terrified.
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“I’m at a school shooting right now,” posted a Twitter user with the handle @TheCaptainAidan.
It was the freshman’s first post about the nightmare that was about to unfold. He was in a classroom, where he said he ran for safety after hearing “3 to 4 pops,” he told the Miami Herald.
“Stay safe and stay hidden, Aidan! We’re all pulling for you, kiddo. You’re gonna be okay. Law enforcement is on the scene,” responded a follower.
“I’m f---ing scared right now,” came his next post.
The next tweet showed that he was on the floor taking his picture, with an overturned chair in front of him. You can see one of his sneakers.
“Still locked in. I checked the local news and there is 20 victims,” Aidan captioned the snap. “Long live Majory Stoneman Douglas High.”
And at last, relief.
Aidan’s final photo showed the young man was free and safe.
“We have been liberated. God bless, America.”
Miami Herald staff writer Alex Harris contributed to this report.