Guidance Counselor Lauded As Hero During Perry Hall School Shooting

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(Credit: Perry Hall Patch)

(Credit: Perry Hall Patch)

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Meghan McCorkell joined the Eyewitness News team in July 2011 as a...
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PERRY HALL, Md. (WJZ) — While the school shooting is a tragedy, school officials say it may have been much worse had it not been for the bravery of the staff inside Perry Hall High School.

Meghan McCorkell has more.

Students are calling one guidance counselor a hero after he put his own life on the line to potentially save dozens more.

“I just can’t believe it happened. It doesn’t feel real,” said one student.

Amidst the chaos in the cafeteria, a hero emerged. Witnesses say as bullets went flying, Perry Hall guidance counselor Jesse Wasmer tackled the gunman and held him to the ground until police arrived.

“The kid had 20 rounds of bullets in his bookbag and Mr. Wasmer saved so many people’s lives,” said senior Kyle Ritter.

“Had it not been for the bravery and heroic acts of Perry Hall staff members, this situation would have been a lot worse,” said School Superintendent Dallas Dance.

An emergency meeting was held Monday night at the Perry Hall Presbyterian Church to let parents and students talk about the shooting. Dozens of students arrived for the meeting to vent their fears and sadness.

Youth group leaders call Mr. Wasmer’s actions a light in this dark day.

“It just talks about his character, that he would be willing to put his life in danger to save these guys,” said Stu Sweitzer.

“In Columbine, no one stood up and stopped them, you know? And here…this is a pretty…amazing thing,” said Bob Arnold.

A Facebook page thanking Mr. Wasmer for saving lives already has thousands of followers. Some students plan to wear shirts to school Tuesday saying Team Wasmer.

“When I see him tomorrow, I’m just going to give him a hug or something,” Ritter said.

The Wasmer family refused to comment on the shooting. They said their prayers are with the victim.

For more information, click here.

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