Washington community continues to heal after school shooting


The community of Marysville, Washington, is still coming to grips with the school shooting that left a student and the alleged student gunman dead - and four of his friends and relatives seriously wounded.

Two 14-year-old girls were still in critical condition Sunday, and two boys - both cousins of alleged shooter Jaylen Ray Freyberg - were also in the hospital. Freyberg took his own life during Friday's tragedy.

"They're just three complete buddies and they couldn't be closer than three brothers," Dan Hatch said of the boys. He is one of the victim's grandfather.

"It's just confusing," added Alex Hatch, one of Fryberg's cousins. "A lot of questions aren't answered. We just don't know why."

Police know what happened, but the motivation remains unclear. A recent fight and a breakup may provide clues to that answer.

"This is going to take time to process. For some it's going to take longer than others," a pastor told his congregation Sunday.

Freyberg was described as popular - a homecoming prince just one week before the deadly rampage. Without warning, gunshots echoed through the cafeteria Friday at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, and students were forced to run for their lives.

"He had a look on his face like he was just realizing what he did, and I think he had a change of heart," said Lucas Thorington, a student. "If he wanted to, he could've gone on."

Witnesses said it ended when teacher Megan Silberberger tried to intervene.

"She doesn't feel like a hero; feels like she just tried to protect kids," said Randy Davis with the Marysville Education Association on Silberberger's behalf.

School officials said classes have been canceled for the coming week as the community searches for answers and ways to heal. After a town hall meeting Sunday, the community will hold another vigil Sunday night at a neighboring high school.

While there's some talk in Washington state about tougher gun legislation, any debate in Washington, D.C., will have to wait until next year when the new Congress is seated.