PARKLAND, Fla. -- As his school copes with the loss of 17 students and faculty members, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School principal Ty Thompson is pledging to help students get through the tragedy.
"Eagles, I promise you I will hug each and every one of you as many times as you need, and I will hold you as long as you need me to for all 3,300 of you and your families. We will get through this together," Thompson said as he fought back tears in a video posted on the school's website Saturday.
"Our community is strong, our students are strong and we will persevere in these trying times," he added.
Thompson thanked those all over the world who have reached out with messages of support and reminded students of the school's motto: Be positive, be passionate and be proud to be an Eagle.
"We lost 17 lives on Valentine's Day. That's supposed to be the international day of love. We're going to take the love that we lost on Wednesday and we're going to spread that over the next days, weeks months and even years," he said.
In a subsequent tweet, Thompson offered a list of ways for the public to help the Stoneman Douglas community. The school is accepting laminated banners of well wishes that will be displayed around the campus, cash donations through the Stoneman Douglas Victims' Fund and in-kind donations through special arrangement with the school district.
'We will get through this together': Stoneman Douglas principal's emotional message to school community
PARKLAND SCHOOL SHOOTING