A note that a young girl wrote on her arm while hiding in a classroom during a school lockdown in Delaware is going viral online.
The 7-year-old girl was attending class at the Odyssey Charter School in Wilmington, Del., when the campus went on lockdown. The temporary closure came in response to a bomb threat made to the building on Feb. 7, the young girl’s mother, Shelley Harrison Reed, told The Hill on Thursday morning.
“So my kid’s school had a genuine lockdown today,” Reed wrote in a Facebook post shortly after the incident that has since been making the rounds on social media. “Some whack job called in a bomb threat. Police came and everything was fine, Thank God!”
“It wasn’t until later when Vanessa was changing out of her school uniform that I saw this on her arm,” Reed continued, while also sharing a photo of a message on her child’s arm that read: “LOVE MOM AND DAD.”
"I say to her, why did you write that on your arm?" Reed wrote. "She says, 'in case the bad guy got to us and I got killed, you and daddy would know that I love you,' and she started to cry."
Reed’s post quickly went viral on social media, garnering more than 90,000 shares in just one week.
The post also appeared to hit a nerve with many online who assumed Reed had a political motive for sharing the photo.
However, Reed, who said she didn’t anticipate the post to go viral, told The Hill her intent “certainly wasn’t any type of political agenda as far as gun control."
“That’s not what this is about,” Reed said. “It was just about our children feeling safe in school.”
Reed said she “was crushed and brought to tears” when she discovered her daughter’s note.
“When I think out loud what she actually said. It was just a raw emotion that I had never experienced before,” she continued.
When she first posted the photo, Reed said she “didn’t have a message.”
“I was just simply posting my emotions when it happened and I wanted to share that, as I said in the post, with the other moms that had gone through that, that day,” Reed said.
“But now that it has taken on a life of its own, I think the message is clear that we as parents in this day and age are just so frightened for our kids’ safety in school – which is probably the place where they should feel the most safe,” Reed continued. “And we don’t have a solution unfortunately at this point and I wish we could find one.”
Though Reed said she is confident of the school’s capability to keep her daughter safe, she told The Hill that her “wish would be that every school has some type of armed guard at each entrance."
“We have so many other buildings that have armed guards and our schools don’t, well most of them anyway,” Reed added. Her comments come a week after a school in Florida captured headlines for hiring a pair of former combat veterans to secure the school grounds in the event of an armed shooter.
As for how her daughter has fared since the lockdown, Reed told Today that she is still "harboring some sense of fear" over the ordeal but added that she has started acting "like her normal self."