'We were praying and just trying to figure things out': Freeman student describes scene

Elisa Vigil, a freshman, witnessed the shooting at Freeman High School in Freeman, Wash., Sept. 13, 2017. Her father, Joe, stands with her. (Credit: KREM)
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One of the survivors of the shooting at Freeman High School Wednesday told a harrowing tale of what happened.

Elisa Vigil, a freshman, was close enough to see the shooter, and three of the victims. She even held hands and prayed with a girl who was shot in the back.

'I got into school, and I have a locker on the freshman floor, on the second floor," said Elisa. "I was about to put my things away, and I just heard a loud 'pop, ' and I just looked behind me and, the shooter, he was just walking down the hall very calmly. Had a very passive face and he just had his pistol and he was shooting, and he shot one boy, and then he shot the ceiling."

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Elisa said she heard lots of screams as she crouched down. That's when she saw a girl fall next to her.

"I kind of came to, and the hallway was empty except for the girl next to me," said Elisa, who described the hallway as very dusty because the ceiling had been shot.

That's when she said the girl had been shot in the back. She also saw one boy had been shot, and then another boy on the other side of the hall had also been shot.

"I could just see the pistol. It was several feet away from me," said Elisa, who said the shooter later walked right past her, throwing away his guns as he went.

Elisa and the injured girl then tried to comfort each other.

"I kind of grabbed her hand, and she was trying to calm me down as well because I was very scared that it was fatal. We were praying and trying to just figure things out," said Elisa.

A teacher came in to help the girl who was shot until paramedics arrived, Elisa said.

Her father, Joe, has another daughter who attends the middle school on campus.

"I was absolutely horrified when I received a phone call from my sister. I hadn't even been notified a shooting had taken place," said Joe. "It's unreal. It's a sad day here in Freeman."