Quick thinking kept Appomattox students safe during tornado

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APPOMATTOX COUNTY (WSLS 10) - In the days that followed the devastation a year ago, the Appomattox County school system was praised for keeping all of its students safe.

On a normal day, the last bus leaves at 3:30 p.m. One year ago, the tornado hit just prior to that, so instead of releasing the buses, the students were held at the school and kept safe by the staff.

Word quickly spread that a massive tornado had touched down, causing extreme damage to parts of the county.

Parents were allowed to come to the school and stay with their children but were not allowed to leave because some of the students didn't have homes to go back to.

The last student was dropped off at 9:30 p.m.

"We had staff here who had no idea whether their home was safe or not. They all pretty much knew where their children were, but they had no idea whether their home was in jeopardy or not and everybody came together for the kids we had in this building," explained Appomattox Elementary School Principal Karen Cyrus.

She said they wouldn't have changed anything they did. Now when their weather radio goes off, the staff finds themselves giving it more attention than they previously did.

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