This is a syndicated post from Politics to Parenting and Everything in Between. [Read the original article...]
I had never heard about this brave and heroic woman before, until today. Yet it’s been a little over two years since she saved the life of the school principal at Sullivan Central High School and countless students and staff. I guess the reason we haven’t heard more about this brave woman is because nobody was killed except for the gunman and all the students and staff remained safe, thanks to the quick and professional actions of Carolyn Gudger.
A local schools official said Tuesday that a school resource officer, staff members and students at Sullivan Central High school reacted “phenomenally well” to a gun-wielding man who was later shot and killed by sheriff’s deputies.
Thomas Richard Cowan, 62, was killed at the school in Blountville after he pointed a loaded pistol at the principal’s head and refused a command to drop the gun. No one else was hurt.
County schools director Jubal Yennie said resource officer Carolyn Gudger and principal Melanie Riden confronted Cowan inside the school entrance and kept him away from students until deputies arrived.
Investigators have not said why Cowan went to the school, where his brother is a janitor.
Sheriff Wayne Anderson said Monday that Cowan entered the school with a .380-caliber semiautomatic, a .25-caliber handgun in his back pocket and 13 bullets. The sheriff said that after Cowan grabbed Riden and pointed the semiautomatic at her head, Gudger pulled her gun on Cowan and moved the principal to safety.
Yennie said that during the confrontation Riden “was able to get the school locked down and 911 notified” before she got away from the gunman. He said Gudger was “able to back him down long enough to make sure the building was secure.”
Yennie said that after Cowan got inside “there was no student visible at all.”
“Our security doors did what they are intended to do,” he said.
Students were dismissed for the day after the shooting and Yennie said one possible shortcoming was the pace of notifying parents: “We didn’t get the message out that students were safe early enough.”
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