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Students return to Nevada school after shooting

Oct. 28, 2013 at 6:06 PM

SPARKS, Nev., Oct. 28 (UPI) -- Students and teachers returned to Sparks Middle School in Nevada Monday for their first day of classes after last week's deadly shooting, officials said.

As children filed into the school on a damp and chilly morning, they were greeted by a staff of counselors, school officials and therapy dogs. And while administrators said they had no illusions about Monday being a "normal day," Superintendent Pedro Martinez said offering students a return to their morning routine was an important first step, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

"Today is the beginning," Martinez said.

A week ago, 12-year-old Sparks student Jose Reyes brought a pistol to school and in the span of 3 minutes fired shots that killed math teacher Michael Landsberry and wounded two students before turning the gun on himself.

While classes resumed Monday, some 400 teachers and students were at the school Thursday for a memorial service honoring Landsberry, who school officials lauded as a hero for trying to get the gun away from Reyes when he was shot.

Katherine Loudon, the district's counseling director, said it was important for the school community to confront the tragedy head-on and cope with the grief and fear that can come with returning to a crime scene.

"We are, but realizing that there has been an incident here that impacted our entire community, and not ignoring that fact," Loudon said.

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