DWTS Star Alek Skarlatos Responds to College Shooting

Dancing with the Stars contestant, Alek Skarlatos, was rehearsing with his pro partner, Lindsay Arnold on Thursday when he heard the terrible news his college was in the grips of a mass shooting.

Sources told TMZ that Alek got a phone call during rehearsals about the tragic shooting at Umpqua Community College where 10 people were killed and 7 more injured.  Alek, reported TMZ, “immediately left the studio when he got the news, and was making calls back home to make sure his friends were safe.”

The Army National Guardsman is studying at Umpqua CC in Oregon for a career in law enforcement. Alek, who became known worldwide after interrupting a potential terrorist attack on a Paris-bound train in August, released a statement to the press:

“I was enrolled as a student at Umpqua Community College prior to my 2014 deployment to Afghanistan. While I was fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time in August aboard a train bound for Paris, I only wish that the same could be said for today. I wish that I could have been there today to assist. I praise the first responders who were on the ground today in Roseburg as they undoubtedly were integral in saving numerous lives and putting a stop to what could have been more than tragic than it is. My heart and prayers go out to this community, my community, right now.”

Police have identified the gunman as 26-year-old Chris Harper Mercer, and have confirmed the death of the shooter. Alek appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Thursday to talk about the tragedy. “It’s a fairly small community college and just the town in general, everybody knows each other, so with that many deceased, I mean everybody’s going to know at least one person,” said Alek, “I mean I would have been there today if I didn’t agree to do this show. I had classes picked out and everything.”

Later in the evening, Alek tweeted that he was on his way back to Oregon:

Via US Magazine, TMZ

About mj santilli 33317 Articles
Founder and editor of mjsbigblog.com, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!