Gunman kills classmate, takes own life at Portland high school

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PORTLAND, OR – An all too familiar tragedy struck at an Oregon high school today. A gunman entered Reynolds High School in Troutdale, Ore., around 8:00 and shot and killed one student.

“At first I thought it was just a joke or something with firecrackers then they started yelling telling us all to get down, and then we all got serious and we went into lockdown,” a student said.

By the time it was over, freshman Emilio Hoffman was dead.

Police say they also found the shooter, a student at the school, dead from what appears to be a self-inflicted wound.

As the morning unfolded, terrified parents gathered nearby, waiting for news about their children.

“We’re sure he’s okay, but until you hear that final word, you always have the thought,” parent Craig Tuholski said. “We’re just waiting.”

Now authorities and the Troutdale community are left asking why and how this could happen in their town.

“This is a very tragic day,” Reynolds School District Superintendent Linda Florence said. “One that I had hoped would never ever be part of my experience.”

A hope we all share — though sadly these tragic days only seem more and more frequent.