According to a Waco, Texas, TV station, a man standing outside a Killeen elementary school is a concerned Army veteran.
After Salvador Ramos killed 19 students and two teachers at Uvalde’s Robb Elementary School, Killeen resident Ed Chelby said he could not sleep.
Chelby’s daughter attends Saegert Elementary, where his wife is also a school nurse, according to the KWTX report. Chelby reportedly corresponded with the superintendent at Killeen ISD and asked for permission to stand guard at the school’s main entrance.
“I said I would just be out there unarmed to let people know that I’m watching,” Chelby said, “let the parents have a little bit of relief.” He expressed surprise when given permission to stand unarmed at the front entrance of his daughter’s school. Chelby, whom the report described as an 11-year veteran of the U.S. Army, intends to ensure only authorized people enter through the school’s front doors.
“I can’t let this go,” added Chelby. “This is just a testament to the sleeplessness caused by the grief I experienced.”
He had previously begun the process of registering as a school volunteer, having completed his paperwork and undergoing a background check when permitted to stand guard.
“I’ve had a lot of emotional people come up to me,” Chelby told the Waco reporter. “They didn’t want to send their kids to school. They struggled with sending their kids to school. And I told them, I was like, ‘I got them.’”
Samantha Longfeather-Locke is the mother of a student attending Saegert, according to a Western Journal report.
“Him standing in front of the school, that’s reassuring,” said Longfeather-Locke. “The world needed to know what he was doing because I feel that’s sparking some sort of change to start,” she said. The grateful mother expressed appreciation, saying Chelby’s presence is providing the comfort everyone is searching for in the wake of Tuesday’s mass shooting in Uvalde.
Blue Starr posted a photo of him standing in front of the school to her Twitter account, saying “We need more like him.”
The 17th-century English poet John Milton best summed it up in the last line of his “Sonnet 19”:
“They also serve who only stand and wait.”
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