After a recent high school shooting on Monday that injured two students, residents in Newport News, Virginia, came together to pray for peace and unity for their community on Tuesday.
On Monday, a 15-year-old male attempted to carry out a shooting at Heritage High school, where two 17-year-old students, a male and a female, were shot. Fortunately, the injuries were non-life-threatening.
In a statement issued by Newport News Police Chief Steve Drew, he said that it was by God's grace that no lives were lost from the shooting.
"It is by the grace of God there was no loss of life," Drew said. "We know this will be difficult to process for everyone involved and hope students, families, and faculty members take advantage of the resources that have been made available to help them cope with what happened yesterday at Heritage High School."
According to Kelly King, an editor for the police department, the suspect has been taken into custody and is facing multiple charges of aggravated malicious wounding and the use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, along with other weapons-related charges.
Although the suspect's name has not been disclosed, he was also a student at the high school and reportedly knew the victims who were shot.
A day after the shooting, Dr. Tremayne Johnson, president of the Coalition of Concerned Clergy, organized a prayer vigil for the Newport News community. He told WTKR News that many of the local residents were still in shock over the incident.
"Twenty-four hours is still a shock," Johnson said.
He added that community members are extending their support to the children in an effort to prevent future outbreaks.
"Not to overreact, but to really react in a way that is responsible that we can talk calmly about how we can move ahead," Johnson asserted.
He also shared that meetings to address the shooting on Monday and additional gun violence in the area were in the works.
According to district spokeswoman Michelle Price, classes at Heritage School were canceled on Tuesday. No decision has been made yet as to when the school can safely reopen.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/LumiNola
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-hosts of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.