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Friday, February 23, 2024

Another victim dies from Washington school shooting

Gay Soriano, left, talks with daughter Gabby, 11, as her brother Titan, 13, and father Rick walk nearby and along a memorial for victims of a deadly school shooting nearly a week earlier  (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Gay Soriano, left, talks with daughter Gabby, 11, as her brother Titan, 13, and father Rick walk nearby and along a memorial for victims of a deadly school shooting nearly a week earlier
(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Another of the teenagers wounded in a Washington state high school shooting has died, raising to four the number of fatalities after a student opened fire in a cafeteria a week ago.

Shaylee Chuckulnaskit, 14, died late Friday afternoon, officials at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett said.

Zoe Galasso, 14, was killed during the shooting Oct. 24 by a popular freshman at Marysville-Pilchuck High School. Gia Soriano, also 14, died Sunday at the Everett hospital.

Two other students remain hospitalized at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. Andrew Fryberg, 15, was in critical condition Friday and Nate Hatch, 14, was in satisfactory condition.

The shooter, Jaylen Fryberg, 15, died of a self-inflicted wound.

The school 30 miles north of Seattle was closed this week and will reopen Monday. The school will have grief counselors available.

“Our hearts are broken at the passing of our beautiful daughter,” Shaylee Chuckulnaskit’s family said in a statement released by Providence officials. “Shay means everything to us. In Shay’s short life she has been a radiant light bringing us incredible joy and happiness. She has been a loving daughter, a caring sister, a devoted friend and a wonderful part of our community. We can’t imagine life without her.”

The family also thanked medics and hospital officials.

Hundreds gathered Thursday on the Tulalip Indian reservation for a memorial service for Jaylen Fryberg, who came from a prominent tribal family. Earlier this week, the Tulalip Tribes released a statement condemning the shooter’s “horrific actions,” but adding it was their custom to come together in times of grief.

Late Friday, the tribes issued a statement on the latest death, saying “our hearts are heavy as we hear of the passing of Shaylee Chuckulnaskit. Shaylee and her family are part of our extended Tulalip community and we offer up our prayers.”

Newly released police radio traffic recordings from the shooting scene showed officers faced a daunting task as they responded to reports of a shooter. They learned they would have to secure a maze of buildings that make up the sprawling campus.

About a minute after 911 dispatchers reported at 10:39 a.m. Oct. 24 that they were receiving calls of a shooting in the Marysville-Pilchuck High School cafeteria, one officer got on the radio from inside and said: “It’s confirmed. We have a shooter. We have five down.”

A few seconds later he added, “The shooter is DOA. We’ve got apparently four” and then “the shooter is down. Two casualties.” Two minutes later: “I have two that are still breathing and alive. Looks like I have three possibly deceased.”

Freshman Jaylen Fryberg was quickly identified as the person who opened fire at his classmates before killing himself.

The recordings, sent to The Associated Press in response to a public records request, reveal the breadth of the police response and the difficulty as officers spent the next two hours trying to get hundreds of students to safety. Authorities have not yet released 911 calls from inside the school.

After one hour, 51 minutes, an officer called in to report: “I need four buses. We have several hundred kids still sheltered in place.”

One hour, 20 minutes into the crisis, the dispatcher told the command post that a parent called to report his son received a text message “indicating that they were lucky (Fryberg) only had six rounds. I don’t know if that was from the subject or secondary.”

The commander responded: “That needs to be addressed immediately.”

As officers arrived at the area, the command post moved them around — closing off this road, securing that building, taping those doors and filling those buses.

They had to get medics to the injured, but they didn’t know if anyone else was part of the shooting. That made the officer inside anxious.

“Advising it’s head wounds,” he told the dispatcher at 5:43 minutes into the crisis.

“Scene’s secure for aid — get ’em in here,” he said at 6:44 minutes.

“Aid can come in, they need to expedite,” he said at 8:11 minutes. And at 9:47 minutes, he said “We need aid ASAP.”

Ten minutes into the crisis, officers reported they had four medical units moving into the school and they identified a landing zone for a helicopter.

But they still needed to secure Washington’s largest high school and reunite those 2,500 students with their parents.

Officers went building to building, knocking on the locked doors and yelling “police.”

“We’ve got a group of 25 coming out of the library,” one officer said 34 minutes into the crisis.

The students and teachers had followed protocol and locked themselves in secure places, but that created a needle-in-a-haystack situation on a campus made up of dozens of separate buildings.

They moved some students through the parking lot before being advised that the cars had not been cleared. A new set of officers rushed in to make sure no other shooters were hiding in the vehicles.

It went on like that for hours.

They finally loaded the students on buses and carried them several blocks away to the Shoultes Gospel Hall church, and to their frantic parents.


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