LEXINGTON, Ky. — Two 15-year-olds were killed and 18 more people were injured in a shooting Tuesday morning at Marshall County High School in Benton, Ky. It’s the site of the annual Marshall County Hoopfest that several of John Calipari’s Kentucky players attend each fall.
Calipari sat on the baseline of the Marshall County High School gym to watch prospects two months ago, and he shared his thoughts on the shooting following Kentucky’s win against Mississippi State on Tuesday at Rupp Arena.
“I was literally nauseous, because I had my TV on in my office and it came across the ticker,” Calipari said. “The sound wasn’t on but I looked and I turned it on. If you have children, my first thought was, when they said some people got killed and people were injured, was like, ‘Oh my gosh.’ And then they made this statement, that parents were racing there to get their children. Could you imagine that drive to that school not knowing if your child had been killed or not? I just welled up like ‘Oh my gosh,’ and I’ve got children.”
Just a few people want Cal's autograph here at Marshall County. pic.twitter.com/dWvgWhE04J
— Joe Mussatto (@joe_mussatto) December 3, 2017
Everyone in Rupp Arena paused for a moment of silence before the game Tuesday in honor of the victims and their families.
Calipari was asked what his message to those in Marshall County is.
“I don’t know, probably there’s nothing I can say other than I’ll be praying for all of them tomorrow at Mass,” he said. “I’ll be taking communion for them, light a candle for them.
“But, what is going on? We’ve got to come together as a country,” Calipari said. “We’ve got to figure out this opioid issue. We’ve got to figure out this gun issue. Is it a gun issue, or is it a mental health issue? What the heck is it? It is something. And we’ve all gotta come together, man. Finally got the government up and running, thank goodness. But it’s an issue now. It’s happening over and over. Come on.
“We’ve got issues we’ve gotta deal with. We’re not going to do them fighting each other, and the I win you lose. Win, win,” Calipari shouted. How bout that one? Win, win. Not I win, you lose. For all of us.”