Stoneman Douglas students, including Strongsville native, return to classes after shooting

The day was filled with love, support, and hope

It was a very different first day of school in Parkland, Florida on Wednesday.

Students at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School returned to class o for the first time since a gunman shot and killed 17 people two weeks ago.

Students came back to a shortened schedule, with the focus on reconnecting as they were greeted by hundreds of police officers, counselors, and others in the community.

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WKYC's Sara Shookman spoke with Liam Kiernan, whose family is originally from Strongsville. Liam is a student at Stoneman Douglas and was in a music class when the shooting started.

He says today was filled with love, support and hope.

"I saw strangers hugging strangers, saying it's going to be okay," Liam told us. "It was something to really see because you're not really used to that. The outpour of support is a sight to behold."

Liam's mom Kelly Kiernan tells us that Stoneman Douglas High School Principal Ty Thompson called parents on Wednesday afternoon saying that in terms of attendance, it was the best first day that they've ever had.

Watch our full interview with Liam and Kelly Kiernan in the player below: