Parents of OSU students react to attack: ‘your first thought is fear’

CHICAGO -- Even with the OSU attack more than 300 miles from Chicago, it didn’t take Katie Gledhill more than a moment to realize how lucky she was that her daughter Maddy, an OSU student, was safe.

"Hearing it from her, hearing that she was safely off campus, that she was unharmed it made it easier to deal with it," Katie said.

Maddy called home right away, and told WGN she was across campus in a lecture hall with unlocked doors and windows when the alert came through, sending students scrambling to get secure.

"Within a couple of minutes we found out that another classroom was able to lock themselves in, and a couple of students chose to go into that room and lock themselves in that room with less windows and less access points where the other half decided, like I did, to leave at that point and get as far away from the campus area," Maddy said.

Here in Chicago, former CPD Superintendent and current Chief of Police at Northeastern University John Escalante knows all too well what it takes to keep a campus secure.

"You always have to be prepared that something awful is going to happen, like what happened at Ohio State," Escalante said.

For Maddy, whose friend was one of those injured in the attack, it’s all happened far too close to home.

"Honestly I walk by those buildings and down 19th every day to get to class, so it was pretty frightening, the fact that it was 500 feet from where I live and where I eat most days," Maddy said.