KNOX COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) - The school shooting in Connecticut shocked many across east Tennessee.
We talked to several parents as they were picking up their children after school at West Hills Elementary in Knox County.
One mom said it's just unthinkable: you get your kids up in the morning, fix breakfast, then send them to school. You never think anything could happen to them.
Tonight, that sense of security is gone.
"They should be safe at school. I feel like that it's safe, but we just don't know whose going to walk into the school," said Elizabeth Yeow.
"I don't even know how to react to that. It's amazing. What can you say to that," said Keith Crenshaw
"Pretty much sickened, I just don't understand it," said James Rooney.
It's no normal Friday for parents waiting in line to pick up their children. Many after spending the day glued to news coverage of the shootings.
"I don't know, I was just so saddened. I actually can't stop crying when I think about it," said Yeow.
"It's horrifying. It's in Connecticut, but it could happen it seems any place now," said Erin Hayes.
As a father, James Rooney says it's hard to imagine how he would handle the news if it hit closer to home.
"It scares you, makes you think, it's the first thing I thought when I saw it today. How would I know if it happened at my school," said Rooney.
"To think that I could get a phone call that my child is harmed, or anything in that. Let alone a shooting," said Crenshaw.
"You're supposed to be safe at school. You can't take everyone's gun away from them, and you're not going to be able to lock your schools down like a prison so I don't think there is an answer," said Roger McDonald.
McDonald unfortunately does know what it's like to get that unimaginable phone call. His nephew, Ryan McDonald, was shot and killed at Central High School just four years ago.