West Virginia Teacher Describes Hostage Situation, Saving People's Lives

Twila Smith recounts what happened when an armed student entered her classroom and held them hostage.
3:54 | 09/02/15

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Transcript for West Virginia Teacher Describes Hostage Situation, Saving People's Lives
Be a maker. Be bold. And paint on. Hgtvhome by Sherwin Williams, now av greatest triumph. The day she got her class out of a hostage situation alive. Twila smith says nothing in her 30 years of teaching quite prepared her for the day a student would walk into her classroom AUT a gun to her head. I've thought that it was my time. Reporter: It was just nine days into the new school year when Phillip Barbour high school goes on lockdown. We have a hostage situation, second floor. Hostage situation. Reporter: The hostages, police say, smith and her sixth period world studies students held at gunpoint from a 14-year-old freshman. He said he was going to kill people and himself and there were times that he would actually hole the gun to himself but briefly and then he would -- he put it on about six students but a lot of the beginning of the time it was on me. Reporter: Smith says the gunman ordered her to cover the window of the classroom door. Since no one passing by in the hallway could see what was happening inside smith and her students spent the entire period trapped with a gunman. You all were in there alone in a crowded school but nobody knows what's going on. About 29 students and myself, about 20, 28 or 29 students. Reporter: With a kid with a gun. What were you in there talking about? I just kept asking him to let everybody leave and he and I would stay. Anything I could think of. Just telling him that he hadn't gone too far. Reporter: When the bell rang, other students began knocking on the door. In my mind that nobody else was coming in the room. Reporter: But smith turned the incoming students back and signaled another teacher Jen swift who came over and took one step inside the classroom. Maybe someone was in trouble. Just seemed something petty and he was standing by the bulletin board with the gun raised towards my head and said you can get in here too. Reporter: Swift ran and called for help. The school was evacuated. Police and the boy's pastor able to convince him to let the hostages go. I did look at him. I think in my mind I said it's going to be okay but I can't say for sure. But I just wanted him to go with us. Reporter: Smith is credited with keeping her cool, keeping the gunman call and saving lives. Even when you thought you were going to get killed, you were still trying to protect your students. I'm in charge of them. When they're in my watch and I hope when my kids went to school the other people felt that way too. I mean, when they walk in here we're protecting -- we're supposed to teach them and we're supposed to take care of them. Reporter: But for her the kids are the real heroes. I can't say enough about these kids. I have never seen bravery like this in my life. Reporter: Well, the student, a 14-year-old now facing some 30 charges reeled to the incident but, George, the teachers want to tell their story and get this out and the message that young teachers especially to be trained and ready for these type of scenarios because it's unfortunate this is the sad, new reality. This is part of a teacher's job description. You saw how it saved lives. She talked about the students ale well, the bravery but this is such a trauma. How are those students doing right now? Reporter: They're doing well now. This happened a week and a half ago but the ccst

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

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