Oxford, MI - After news of the high school shooting on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021, the Eastern Michigan Division Emergency Disaster Services team was on site at Oxford High School, led by Major Timothy Meyer. Food was donated by Culver's and McDonald's. Students gathered at a local coffee shop and received prayer. A candlelight vigil took place on the night of December 3rd, where we provided hot chocolate and more spiritual care.
Jacob Elias and Chuck McDougall from the Emergency Disaster Services team shared their thoughts and reflections after serving first responders at the school:
The scene was hectic, tense and busy once we got to the school. We headed to the school parking lot to begin serving food and beverages to first responders, and it was very difficult to get through, with officers clearing us checkpoint after checkpoint. There were two or three hundred first responders altogether that we were able to feed. Police officers who came to our truck looked exhausted and frustrated. Some of them had children of their own attending the school - I think the most difficult part for them was arriving at the school and knowing that they couldn't go looking for their kids because they had a job to do. We did everything we could to serve and help them.
After we served the first responders, we received a call to go to the coffee shop where about 70 students, most of them members of the football team, had gathered. Major Tim was able to speak and pray with the students as they began to process the tragedy. We left shortly before midnight.
We provided hot chocolate during the candlelight vigil, and we have been invited back on Monday, December 13th for a Community Healing event, where there will be speakers from Columbine and Sandy Hook at the Legacy Center. We will be on site serving meals and snacks.
This tragedy is not over for Oxford by any means. They have a long road to recovery, and we will be there to help as much as we possibly can.