SANTA FE, Texas (KTRK) -- Tuesday morning will be bittersweet for the Santa Fe community.
It will be painful for students to step back on the campus where 10 people died and 13 more were hurt, but it is an important step toward healing, a large family reuniting in strength.
Some will find comfort, others renewed grief.
For teacher Ken Harms, it's like a homecoming to have the students back.
"We just have to get together, love one another, and just persevere," said Harms. He is a history teacher, a man who understands things in their context. On Monday, Memorial Day, he was at a nearby park, entertaining his friends and neighbors during a community picnic.
It was sponsored by the Houston Dynamo and organized by a group of students, including senior Kaitlyn Richards, who was in class when she heard the alarm and evacuated. She had mixed emotions about returning.
"I don't know if we'll ever be ready to go back to school," she said. "But I don't want that last day to be my last memory of my senior year. I just want to know I can see all my classmates once again."
We know that so many of the people at the park Monday will line Highway 6 on Tuesday, welcoming back the students to campus. Shari Ferguson hopes to be there too with Faithful Friends Therapy Dogs. They offered comfort on the day of the shooting and want to offer it again.
"The dogs have an unconditional love that they're able to show people," said Ferguson, "and we just want to be there to support them. "
Santa Fe is more than a high school. It's a community of tightly bonded men, women, and children.
Mayor Jason Tabor wouldn't have it any other way.
"We all feel like we're one," said Mayor Tabor. "We pray together. We all come together. "
It won't be a normal day of classes since students aren't required to attend.
Ken Harms hopes he'll see the halls packed again, as it should be.
Classes to begin Tuesday at Santa Fe High School after fatal shooting
SANTA FE HIGH SCHOOL SHOOTING