Robert Runcie had just handed the keys for a brand new Toyota Camry to Tammy Freeman, his school district’s Teacher of the Year.
“Congratulations Tammy!!!,” he wrote on Twitter.
And then he got the news. A shooting had taken place six miles away at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
And just like that, the Broward County Schools Superintendent’s day veered from triumph to tragedy.
“We were celebrating our teachers, our schools,” said Runcie, who learned of the shooting as he was leaving Monarch High School in his car.
“Today has been a day of enormous mountains and valleys,” he said. “There are numerous fatalities. It’s a horrific situation. It’s just a horrible day for us.”
RHONA WISE/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School staff, teachers and students return to school greeted by police and well wishers in Parkland, Florida on February 28, 2018.
Students grieving for slain classmates prepared for an emotional return Wednesday to their Florida high school, where a mass shooting shocked the nation and led teen survivors to spur a growing movement to tighten America's gun laws. The community of Parkland, Florida, where residents were plunged into tragedy two weeks ago, steeled itself for the resumption of classes at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where nearby flower-draped memorials and 17 white crosses pay tribute to the 14 students and three staff members who were murdered by a former student.
/ AFP PHOTO / RHONA WISE (Photo credit should read RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images)
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This image made available by the Broward County Sheriff's Office on Sunday, Feb. 18, 2018, shows Sheriff Scott Israel, holding the hand of Anthony Borges, 15, a student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. The teenager was shot five times during the massacre on Valentine's Day that killed 17 students. Borges is being credited with saving the lives of at least 20 other students. (Broward County Sheriff's Office via AP)
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