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'Good night': Uvalde school shooting survivors describe gunman's words before opening fire

Nineteen children and two teachers were killed in the carnage. Another 17 people were injured. Texas investigators said victims were found in four classrooms.
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Survivors of the Texas elementary school shooting are recounting the gunman's eerie final words of "Good night" and "You're all gonna die" before opening fire, and how some played dead to be spared in the spray of bullets.

Fourth grade student Miah Cerrillo, 11, told CNN her class was watching “Lilo and Stitch” when the shooter appeared Tuesday at Robb Elementary in Uvalde.

She said the gunman looked at one of her teachers in the eye and said, “Good night” before shooting her.

Miah told her story through a CNN producer. She did not want to speak on camera and declined to speak to any men following her experience with the school shooting and only felt comfortable speaking to women, the broadcaster said. NBC News could not immediately verify the account.

People visit a memorial for victims of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School
People visit a memorial Thursday in the town square for victims of the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.Eric Thayer / Getty Images

Miah herself was hit by fragments in the hail of bullets, CNN reported.

After firing shots in her classroom, the shooter went into the adjoining classroom and opened fire, Miah said. She said she heard “sad music” playing, believing the gunman put it on. 

When asked what the music was, she said it sounded like, “I want people to die music.”

Miah said that when the gunman went into the other room she smeared a friend’s blood on herself to look dead. She also said she and a friend grabbed their teacher’s phone and called 911, telling a dispatcher, “Please send help because we’re in trouble.” 

In the Tuesday horror, 19 children and two teachers were killed, and another 17 were wounded.

A Robb Elementary teacher, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told NBC News that a Raptor alert, a program designed to alert staff of a lockdown, went off after shots were fired and children started to hide under their desks in the class. 

Samuel Salinas, 10, was a student in teacher Irma Garcia’s class on Tuesday when the school shooting unfolded.

“It was a normal day until my teacher said we’re on severe lockdown” and “then there was shooting in the windows,” he said in an interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America” Friday.

He said that the gunman barged into the classroom, announced, “You’re all gonna die,” and then started to shoot. 

“He shot the teacher and then he shot the kids,” Samuel said. 

He explained that he survived by playing dead after he got hit in the leg with shrapnel that hit a chair between him and the shooter.

A man prays at a memorial for victims of the May 24th mass shooting at Robb Elementary School
A man prays Thursday at a memorial for Uvalde victims.Liz Moskowitz for NBC News

“I think he was aiming at me,” Samuel said. “I played dead so he wouldn’t shoot me.”

When police finally entered the room and shot the gunman, the kids were evacuated. In the rushed exit, Samuel saw the bodies of his teacher and other pupils.

“There was blood on the ground,” he said. “And there were kids ... full of blood.” 

Questions swirl about police response

The investigation into the shooting is ongoing, and many questions remain as to why it took police so long to take out the gunman.

The shooter, Salvador Ramos, 18, was killed at the scene.

In a news conference Thursday, Texas officials walked back previously released information, saying the gunman wasn’t confronted by a school police officer and entered the school building unobstructed.

Police now say it took over an hour from the first 911 call to stop the massacre.

Officials shared a new timeline revealing that at 11:28 a.m. Tuesday the gunman crashed a vehicle near the school and shot at two people outside a funeral home across the street, then climbed over a fence to Robb Elementary.

Law enforcement and other first responders gather outside Robb Elementary School
Law enforcement and other first responders gather outside Robb Elementary School following a mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday.Dario Lopez-Mills / AP

Officials said the first 911 call came in at 11:30 a.m., the gunman entered the school 10 minutes later and four minutes later police were on the scene. The first officers on the scene called for backup, but tactical teams didn’t arrive until about an hour later, Victor Escalon, the South Texas regional director for the state Department of Public Safety, said Thursday.

Texas investigators told NBC News victims of the shooting were found in four classrooms.

Robb Elementary serves second through fourth grade students in the small town of Uvalde, which is about 75 miles from the Mexico borders and home to a large Latino community.

Families outside school begged for action

Parents and loved ones who were gathered outside Robb Elementary during the shooting begged and shouted at police to enter and protect their kids.

Angeli Rose Gomez told The Wall Street Journal she was handcuffed by U.S. marshals outside the school for repeatedly demanding police enter the school. 

“The police were doing nothing,” she said to the paper. “They were just standing outside the fence. They weren’t going in there or running anywhere.” 

She said at first she waited patiently then when she became more fervent with her pleas, U.S. marshals allegedly arrested her for intervening in an active investigation. 

Marshals told NBC News in a statement that deputy marshals “never arrested or placed anyone in handcuffs while securing the crime scene perimeter.”

“Our deputy marshals maintained order and peace in the midst of the grief-stricken community that was gathering around the school."