Reporter at Nashville Scene Survived a School Shooting

Joylyn Bukovac urged parents to be gentle with kids who were there
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 28, 2023 12:14 AM CDT
Reporter Reveals She's a School Shooting Survivor On Air at Nashville Scene
A group of girls leave after a prayer vigil at Woodmont Christian Church for victims of a mass shooting at Covenant School on Monday, March 27, 2023, in Nashville, Tenn.   (Mark Zaleski/The Tennessean via AP)

While reporting live on air at the scene of Monday's mass shooting at a Nashville elementary school, WSMV 4 reporter Joylyn Bukovac revealed that she survived a school shooting when she was in eighth grade. "This is something that hits very close to home for me—many of you might not know this, but I am actually a school shooting survivor,” Bukovac said, per NBC News. She noted that since Columbine High School in 1999, there have been almost 380 more shootings at US schools, "my middle school being one of them. This school being one of them." She said she was in the hallway when a shooter opened fire at her school in 2010, and that the Nashville shooting brought up a lot of "tough memories." The Daily Beast notes the date she mentioned corresponds with an Alabama school shooting that left one student dead.

For families of children present at the Covenant School during Monday's shooting, she had some advice: "If your student witnessed the unthinkable today, just be very gentle with them and let them talk when they’re ready, because the shock that they’re going to be feeling when they’re coming home is going to be unfathomable. ... I wasn’t really ready to talk about it for two years really," she said, adding that the important thing is to be there for their kids and make sure the lines of communication are open. She later tweeted thanking people for their support following her on-air reveal. "I just want people to know they aren’t alone," she wrote. "I also want to discuss solutions. As a mom, I am worried for the future." (More Nashville school shooting stories.)

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