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Viral photo shows Army vet father guard Texas school after Uvalde shooting

An Army veteran who couldn’t sleep after the Uvalde school massacre stood guard in front of his daughter’s Texas elementary school, a now-viral photo shows.

Dad Ed Chelby contacted Killeen Independent School District officials to ask if he could stand in front of Saegert Elementary School unarmed while class was in session before summer break, according KWTX.

Chelby, who was in the Army for 11 years and has a security background, was given the green light to his surprise, KWTX reported.

“I said I would just be out there unarmed to let people know that I’m watching,” Chelby told the station. “Let the parents have a little bit of relief.”

“I’ve had a lot of emotional people come up to me,” he reportedly said. “They didn’t want to send their kids to school. They struggled with sending their kids to school. And I told them, I was like, ‘I got them.’ ”

A photo posted online of Chelby with his hands in his pockets and sunglasses on near the front doors of the school has since on viral.

Army veteran Ed Chelby volunteered to stand guard unarmed at his daughter’s Texas elementary school after the school shooting in Uvalde.
Instagram / Ed Chelby

Chelby, whose wife is a nurse at the same school, filed to be a school volunteer and was in the middle of a background check when he began watching over the school, KWTX reported.

“I can’t let this go,” said Chelby told KWTX. “This is just a testament to the sleeplessness caused by the grief I experienced.”

Saegert Elementary is about a four-hour drive from Robb Elementary School where gunman Salvador Ramos killed 21 people, including 19 young students. It’s the worst mass shooting in a school since the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.

Ed Chelby
Chelby was in the Army for eleven years.
Instagram / Ed Chelby

Samantha Longfeather-Locke, a mother of a student at the school, snapped the photo that’s been widely shared, according to KWTX.

She said seeing Chelby out there was “reassuring.”

“The world needed to know what he was doing because I feel that, that’s sparking some sort of change to start,” she told the station.

Robb Elementary School
Chelby said he volunteered to help ease parents’ worries after the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School.
AP

Saegert Elementary Principal Eli Lopez told Newsweek Chelby’s actions have restored a sense of security for jittery parents. One mother even approached him in tears to thank him for making both her and her child feel safe at school, Lopez told Newsweek.

“A child should never have to worry for their safety as they come in to school and Mr. Chelby helped ensure that sense of security the last two days of school after a horrific tragedy,” said Lopez in an email to Newsweek.

After Chelby’s effort, a veteran mom offered to watch the back of the school, according to the outlet and more parents have volunteered to guard the school next year.

“We all struggle with that. You don’t know if you should send your kid to school. You want them to get their education and their experience of the last days of school, but you want to protect them with everything you got,” Chelby told KWTX.

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