Residents of Moore, Okla., Gather to Pay Their Respects

The first victims of the Oklahoma tornado laid to rest today as some teachers return to schools.
2:19 | 05/23/13

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Transcript for Residents of Moore, Okla., Gather to Pay Their Respects
In moore am cl, the first funerals for the people killed by the ef-5 tornado, some teachers returned to the scene of so much horror, three days after that direct hit twister outbreak. Abc's byron pitts is there tonight. Very good to see you. Reporter: Kindergarten teacher jennifer simons arrived back at plaza towers elementary for the first time since monday's tornado. Here, where seven children died, her six students live, shielded beneath her body, when an suv crashed through the ceiling of her classroom. I just tried to save them, and it crushed my arm and I'm okay with that. Reporter: The nightmare she endured and the bravery she displayed, caught on tape at neighboring briarwood schools, where other teachers battled darkness, fear, falling debris, and protected children. Reporter: Today many parent expressed their gratitude for all the teachers and students on what should have been the last day of school. She shielded with her own body to protect my daughter. You know, I'm never going to have any words to, you know, to repay her for what she did. Reporter: The first of 24 funerals 9-year-old antonia and layeria was laid to rest during a violent thunderstorm. I feel fortunate, but it hurts. What do you say to those parents? They didn't get to bring their kids home. Reporter: Ashlyn and the others were given backpacks with goodies for the summer. Her sadness hidden behind a smile. Three of my friends had siblings that died and none of them were there. I really wish they were there, because I would like to see them. Reporter: As for kindergarten teacher jennifer simons her right arm crushed by the tornado. I don't think I'm a hero. It's what anybody would do. Reporter: A storm could steal her school, jennifer told us, not her spirit. She'll be back in the classroom next fall. Byron pitts, abc news, moore, oklahoma.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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