After a gunman stormed Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in South Florida Wednesday and killed 17 people, a student who survived the massacre said suspected shooter Nikolas Cruz could have been stopped if a teacher had a firearm as well.
Colton Haab is a junior at Stoneman Douglas and a second lieutenant in the school's JROTC program, which Cruz was also a member of. He told Fox News Saturday morning that training and arming teachers on campus would be a "big beneficial factor into school safety."
Haab specifically mentioned assistant football coach Aaron Feis, who was shot to death while selflessly shielding students from bullets. Feis was also a school security guard.
"If coach Feis had had his firearm in school that day, I believe that he could have most likely stopped the threat," Haab said.
Even without a firearm, many have hailed Feis as a hero in those harrowing moments. And Haab, too, was able to help students during the shooting.
As a JROTC member, Haab is familiar with the shooting team's equipment and put it to use when Cruz sprayed bullets through the halls of his school.
Haab told the AP that he helped usher about 90 students into the room where cadets train with pellet rifles. Haab moved the Kevlar sheets used as a backdrop for target practice away from the wall and told everyone to hide behind them. As it was, the shooter never approached the ROTC rooms.
The JROTC marksmanship program uses air rifles special-made for target shooting, typically on indoor ranges at targets the size of a coin. Records show that the Stoneman Douglas JROTC program received $10,827 in non-cash assistance from the NRA's fundraising and charitable arm in 2016, when Cruz was on the squad. The school's program publicly thanked the NRA Foundation on its Twitter feed.
Haab told the AP he sees nothing negative about the NRA's contribution to the ROTC program. In fact, he said, the equipment the group funded could have helped save the students' lives if the gunman had targeted them.
Still, Haab told Fox there needs to be "a little bit more" gun control. However, he added, "I don't think that we're gonna get gun control in such a quick enough response."
The Associated Press contributed to this response.