Training prepares first responders for the worst

The hallway is quiet and dark except for the rasping breath and hushed whimpers of the shooting victims inside. They are waiting for rescue in the wake of the unthinkable.

Suddenly flashlights illuminate the hallway as Santa Rosa sheriff’s deputies, tailed by a team of Midway Fire District firefighters, rush to their aid. The team begins preparing patients to be moved outside the danger area as the officers stand watch.

Within seconds gunfire breaks out just feet from the victims.

This was the fictional scene played out Monday at Woodlawn Beach Middle School as part of a series of countywide active shooter training exercises this summer. Though it was not real, the scenario could be.

Read the full article in the July 20 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at for as little as $38 per year.

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