A student from Broughton High School in Raleigh was on Capitol Hill during the chaotic situation. It was a nightmare for Jennifer Rochelle.
"It said shooting, gunshots fired and I'm like, 'Oh, my gosh what's going on,'" said Rochelle.
Rochelle's son, Wesley, who is a Broughton High School junior, was handpicked for a prestigious national youth leadership forum on national security.
When Rochelle saw the situation unfolding, she quickly phoned a woman working with the program.
"She said 'Your son is fine. The group that he's in, he's not in that immediate area,'" said Rochelle.
Then she says she got an email about 30 seconds later.
"It said all students have been, they are safe, and all are accounted for," said Rochelle.
Those messages prepared her for the call she got next from her son.
"I said 'What happened did you see anything?' He said. 'We could see all the sirens. You could see the police. They were chasing. We didn't know what was going on though all of this, but you know, we're ok.'"
They were tense moments over a frightening experience for a teen and his worried mom.
"Since 911, everybody's always you know -- thinking in the back of their minds -- this could happen," said Rochelle.
Rochelle said her son wants to one day work in U.S. intelligence.