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Superintendent on school staff response to shooting: 'What they did defeated evil'

Richard Fitzpatrick, superintendent of the Corning Union Elementary School District

RANCHO TEHAMA RESERVE, Calif. - A school secretary heard gunshots in the distance - and initiated a lockdown of the school.

As students filed into the building, a custodian distracted the gunman, providing crucial seconds that allowed school staff to complete the lockdown.

The gunman never accessed the school, but did fire rounds through the wall.

A student in the Kindergarten/First Grade classroom suffered injuries to the chest and foot. That student is now in fair condition.

"The reason that I'm standing here today and I'm able to speak to you without breaking down and crying is due to the heroic efforts of our school staff. Love and kindness and selflessness paired with the ability to professionally due what they did defeated evil yesterday," Richard Fitzpatrick, superintendent of the Corning Union Elementary School District, said Wednesday of how Rancho Tehama Elementary School staff responded to a shooting rampage Tuesday. "The fact is we don't have another one of those stories where multiple children are dead because of the heroics of my school staff."

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