A heartbreaking account from a doctor in the children’s trauma center of a San Antonio, Texas, hospital recounting the day they waited for an influx of children, injured in a school shooting 85 miles away in Uvalde. But the kids never came.

We wanted to have never heard of them, for them to never need us. But, when that was no longer possible, we wanted the children stuffed into ambulances and helicopters, winging their way to us, filling our emergency room, spilling their blood in our operating rooms, and surviving to breathe again in the pediatric I.C.U. We wanted them here.

Cheri Lucas Rowlands

Cheri has been an editor at Longreads since 2014. She's currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area.