As witnesses recount the horrific crime at Sandy Hook Elementary, one constant is emerging: Even more children would have been killed had it not been for the actions of teachers, a custodian and even the students themselves.
"A lot of children are alive today because of actions the teachers took," School Superintendent Janet Robinson told NBC's TODAY show on Saturday, a day after a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at the K-4th grade school in Newtown, Conn.
Principal Dawn Hochsprung and school psychologist Mary Sherlach, both among those killed, were said to have run toward the gunfire as it broke out, with Hochsprung lunging at the gunman, according to town officials.
Hochsprung was coming out of a meeting when she confronted the shooter, Board of Education chairwoman Debbie Liedlien said Saturday.
Jeff Capeci, chairman of Newtown's Legislative Council, said Hochsprung's actions were nothing short of heroic. "From what we know, it's hard to classify her as anything else," he added.
Mary Ann Jacob, a school library aide, told reporters Saturday that she was with 18 fourth-graders when she heard "popping sounds" and realized shots had been fired.
"I shouted 'Lockdown!' and I ran across the hall and told the other class," Jacob said.
She then discovered that her classroom door would not lock. After blocking the door from the inside with a filing cabinet, Jacob and the rest of the library staff guided the children in a group-crawl to a closet in the back.
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