The Timberview High School football team played a game two days after four people were injured during a shooting at the school, with the opposing team sharing messages of support before the kickoff.
On Wednesday, Timberview student Timothy George Simpkins allegedly opened fire in a Timberview classroom, resulting in two gunshot injuries and two other injuries. Simpkins was released from jail on Thursday after posting a $75,000 bond.
Before the game, the teams and braced and cheerleaders from the opposing side, Waco University High School, held signs with messages like “Praying for you, Timberview,” “Sending you our love” and “The U Supports You, Timberview,” according to The Dallas Morning News.
Timberview parents Larry and Kim Obholz attended the game in support of their son Caden, a sophomore kicker on the team who was inside the classroom during the shooting only two days earlier.
“It’s a blessing all our kids are here,” Larry told the paper. “It’s going to take them a while to get through it, but I think them playing the game tonight is probably going to help the recovery process a little bit. … I’m a sports guy, it means everything… it’s all about family. It’s not about anything. It’s family, and it’s what you’ve got to have.”
“It’s a blessing to be here,” added Kim. “It’s a little bit surreal. I’m happy we’re here, because we could be somewhere else. I’m glad this is happening. I’m glad we came.”
Kim went on to recall a “very scary” moment after the shooting on Wednesday, when she had received a text message informing her of the shooting and for a time could not make contact with her son.
“It was something that’s your worst nightmare,” she said. “It only happens somewhere else, not here. Not here … it’s a fear that you can’t even imagine.”
Caden’s parents reportedly watched from the stands as he scored extra points during Friday’s game. Timberview went on to defeat Waco University by a final score of 76 to 0. Opposing fans expressed support for Timberview regardless of the score.
“I’ve been here 20 years and it’s certainly one of my biggest fears that something like that happens in our school so we really want to send our love and prayers,” Waco University faculty member Leonard Montelongo, Jr. told KTVT.
A 15-year-old shooting victim was left in critical condition after Wednesday’s shooting, while the other shooting victim, a 25-year-old teacher was in good condition. Two others suffered minor injuries. The family of alleged shooter Simpkins has claimed that he was the victim of bullying and acted in self-defense.
The Mansfield Independent School District (MISD) set up a 24-hour crisis hotline and referral service to assist students who may be suffering emotional or mental health issues in the wake of the shooting.
Newsweek reached out to MISD for comment.