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WEST PALM BEACH – Bob Sullivan’s 16-year-old daughter attends Dreyfoos School of the Arts.
Sullivan was shopping at Aldi on Friday when he received a series of text messages from his daughter.
“Hi dad, we’re on code red right now. It’s true. Love you,” she wrote.
What happened: Students and staff safe after West Palm Beach police shot dead at Dreyfoos School of the Arts
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On Friday afternoon, a van crashed through a metal fence and onto the Dreyfoos campus in West Palm Beach with city police in pursuit, sending the school into lockdown. A West Palm Beach police official said city police shot the man who got out of the van and was acting erratically.
After reading his daughter’s texts about the incident, Sullivan immediately dropped his groceries and rushed to school, imagining the “worst-case scenario,” he said, holding back tears.
Meanwhile, her daughter, a grade 11 visual arts student, took refuge behind a locked door in a women’s locker room as the incident unfolded.
Sullivan arrived in a sea of flashing red and blue lights. Standing behind a yellow police tape near Fern Street and South Sapodilla Avenue, he read new text messages from his daughter, whom he asked not to be named.
She heard a knock on the door, as someone announced “Police”, but she was reluctant to leave. Coordinating her rescue from off campus, Sullivan spoke to a police officer, who assured the concerned father that it was now “100% safe” for his daughter to come out of hiding.
Memories from filming Parkland in 2018
All he could do was wait. Sullivan looked around the campus, eagerly awaiting news of her daughter.
Sullivan said her family was living in Parkland in 2018. They felt an immediate wave of grief following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and Friday afternoon those memories came flooding back.
“She’s safe but traumatized,” Sullivan said of her daughter.
Giuseppe Sabella is a veteran school reporter at the Palm Beach Post, part of the USA TODAY Florida Network. You can reach him at email@example.com. Help support our journalism. Subscribe today.
This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Post: Filming in West Palm Beach near Dreyfoos School: Dad goes to see his daughter
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