by CAROLINE GAVURA Section Editor
Sixteen-year-old Alex Hribal will be charged as an adult for stabbing 20 students and one adult at Franklin Regional High School in the Pittsburgh area.
The sophomore is being charged with 21 counts of aggravated assault, four counts of attempted homicide, and one count of possessing a prohibited weapon on school grounds.
Hribal, who authorities describe as quiet and reserved, went on a stabbing spree with two, eight to 10 inch kitchen knives before being tackled by Vice Principal Sam King.
While doctors from Forbes Regional Hospital said many of the students’ wounds were life-threatening, they believe that all the victims will survive due to the heroic acts of the staff and students at Franklin Regional. This group of brave individuals did everything from pulling the fire alarm to alert everyone to move to safety, to nursing victims’ wounds until paramedics arrived at the scene.
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett, said, “There are a number of heroes on this day.”
Even though terrifying violence and chaos was going on around them, staff members kept calm. They told students who were trying to help to get to safety and continued to nurse victims on their own, despite the danger at hand.
“It is amazing how ordinary people, like teachers and cafeteria workers, stepped up to keep everyone safe. The fact that the Vice Principal tackled the attacker, risking his own safety, to stop him from hurting anyone else is amazing. Courageous acts like these give me hope for the future,” said senior Kelsey Rudowitz.
Teachers even asked for everyone’s hooded sweatshirts to use on victims to stem the bleeding. They blocked students from looking so they were not traumatized by seeing their peers in such a gruesome state.
Sometimes the heroes became the victims.
Gracey Evans, a student at Franklin Regional, described her best friend’s heroism: “My best friend stepped in front of me and he got stabbed in the back. And then in thirty seconds, I saw (two other) people get stabbed. I was keeping him conscious as long as I could. He started coughing and barfed, and I couldn’t take the smell. That’s when a bunch of blood came out of his wound, and I couldn’t take it anymore.”
Thankfully, EMTs rushed in shortly after and took Evans’ friend to the hospital. She said he did not let go of her hand the entire time.
“That story honestly makes me want to cry. It’s amazing how much love and compassion this small community has shown since the attack. Even at a young age, students were willing to risk their lives for each other,” said junior Cori Haider.
Hribal was jailed without bail, and will wait for his trial. The FBI are investigating the motive Hribal may have had to commit such an act, including a threatening phone call he made to a boy the night before the attack. They have investigated his home and took at least one computer, along with other items to search for evidence.
What do think about the heroism that was displayed by the members of Franklin Regional High School?