Townville Residents Still Feel Affect of School Shooting

Townville, SC (WLTX) - It's been a year and a half since the Townville Elementary School shooting but the community is still feeling the impact today.

September 28th, 2016 is a day Shannon Alewine will never forget.

“It’s just tragic. It’s still tragic to this day. It’s like a sore that won’t heal and anything can peel that scab off. It’s all back fresh new again. It smothered me. I didn’t think I was going to be able to breath to make it from my house to the school,” explained Alewine.

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Alewine got the call that Townville Elementary, the school where his son and great nephew went to, had a shooting. Within minutes he arrived here to help find and protect his own family.

”I’d seen every child that came out of that school. I’d seen the fear on their faces. I finally seen my son first and I grabbed him and pulled him to me. Then I started looking for grand nephews and my nieces. I would never have thought in my life ever that a school shooting would happen here in the small town of Townville,” said Alewine.

Being a small town, it made things worse in some ways for Alewine.

“What really sucks is that I know everybody. I knew the shooter, I watched the little boy who got shot and killed… I watched him grow up in my café. Every weekend his family was there,” explained Alewine.

Six-year-old Jacob Hall was shot and killed and two others were injured. Alewine’s nephew witnessed it all.

“My great nephew was actually standing beside the shooter when the shooter shot his teacher. He was one of the children left outside to scream and beat on the doors to get in," said Alewine.

He says because of what his great nephew and son went through and the decision the suspected shooter made, it’s still leaving an impact over a year-and-a-half later.

“My son went from sleeping in his own bed back to sleeping in the bedroom with us. My great nephew, I see him go through transitions in his mind. You shouldn’t have to see a six-year-old child go through that but I guess a six-year-old shouldn’t have to stand and watch his teacher get shot either,” said Alewine.

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Alewine says sounds like a car backfiring or books dropping can freeze his kids at any moment. The shooting has even left an impact on him himself.

“Some days, even myself, I don’t even leave the house. I just clam up. To hell with society. To hell with the way people act. Why should I take my children out and chance someone shooting up something. But this is something that’s going to affect everyone in this community probably to the end of their lives,” explained Alewine.

Last week the judge said the suspected shooter will be tried as an adult. Now Alewine says he and the community can hold onto that moving ahead in the future.

"I feel better now because I can tell my nine-year-old child that you don’t have to worry about this kid walking the same streets that you’re going to walk in five or six years because he’s going to be tried as an adult," said Alewine.

For more information on the ruling of the suspected shooter being tried as an adult, click here.