Child Hostage Accounts
While we hold these accounts sacred and very personal, it seems important to share them, in our own way. For more context on the sharing of these stories, please read the "Foreword" on the Home Page.
Kam Wixom - 12 yr old, 6th Grade StudentAfter-lunch recess ended, we brushed off grass stains and some mud spots from our clothes. We were happy to be done with the snowy months, and enjoying the warmer weather. We filed inside for our 30 minutes of quiet reading time. Mr. Mitchell interrupted the silent reading and asked us if we noticed a smell of gasoline. Many of us did. He wondered if the custodian was getting the lawn mower ready for spring or something. We returned to our books to finish up reading time and then walked single file to the south side of the building for our routine afternoon bathroom break. Ready to return to class, I lined up near Mr. Mitchell against the media center wall, facing down the south hallway. Most of us were lined up, ready to return to class when a lady walked up to us from room number four. She asked if we could follow her to the 2nd grade room, she had a surprise waiting for us in Room 4. Mr. Mitchell was visibly and audibly puzzled. He wondered why he didn’t know anything about this surprise, seeing that his own wife was the teacher in that room. As we followed her toward the room, he turned to us, asking if any of us knew who this woman was. No one knew. The door opened and the room was darkened, with many of the overhead florescent lights turned off...
Lori Nate Conger - 11 yr old, 5th Grade Student 1986I was just finishing my 5th grade year and was in the music room with my class waiting for our music teacher to return with a video machine so we could watch our concert from the night before. He was gone an especially long time, and I began to feel something was not quite right. Then, a strange lady appeared and told us to follow her to the first grade class room where the rest of the school was waiting. I felt very wary of her, but not knowing what else to do (and not expecting the circumstances that awaited us), we followed. As soon as we stepped inside the room, I knew something was definitely wrong. There was a feeling there of fear and apprehension.
4th Grade Student
3rd Grade Student
2nd Grade Student
Katie Walker - 7 yr old, 1st Grade Student 1986It was a normal spring day for me I got up went to school ate lunch had recess and was about our normal daily activities which included being combined with the other 1st grade class in the afternoon for reading time, when a man walked in to our classroom pulling a cart behind him. A woman was with him, carrying guns that she lined up near the chalkboard. Other classes started to come in to the classroom, Room4, and I was joined by my friends and neighbors and a brother and sister when they came in the room. I wasn't scared at first, simply because at age 7 I was pretty oblivious to strangers and "bad people" in the world. I lived in a town of less than 500 and I trusted others, although that would soon change.
Jennie Sorensen - 7 yr old, 1st Grade Student 1986There were two 1st Grades at the time. I remember it being a nice, spring day in May and I had just come in from an enjoyable recess. After lunch recess, we were getting ready to settle down for story time. My teacher was combining with the other 1st grade across the hall and they gathered us in our classroom (Room 4). It was always fun to get together and I was especially happy to be altogether that day. We were interrupted by a man (David Young) and his wife (Doris Young) bursting into our 1st grade classroom. She immediately lined up guns along the chalk board. A lot of guns! I had been around hunting rifles all my life due to the fact that we lived in the country and my father hunted every fall so I wasn’t worried at that point. I think I thought, “well this is a weird place for an assembly and that is a weird looking grocery cart!”