Though reports yesterday indicated no swimmers were among the five killed and six wounded in a shooting at the Fort Lauderdale airport yesterday, the University of Vermont reports three of its swimmers were injured in the “chaotic evacuation” from the terminal, one with a broken foot.
Vermont Athletic Director Jeff Schulman released a statement Saturday, reporting that three Vermont student-athletes suffered “light to moderate injuries” during the rush out of the terminal. The team was in the Fort Lauderdale airport, heading from its training trip in Florida up to Baltimore for a triangular against UMBC and Howard. Schulman says the team was not in the terminal where the shooting happened (Terminal 2), but that the terminal that did house the team became “quite unsettled and resulted in a hurried and chaotic evacuation.” The statement says three Vermon athletes were injured.
One was taken to a hospital to treat a broken foot. The other two were treated by the team’s athletic trainer, who was traveling with the team.
Vermont was unable to compete in the triangular, which was slated to start at 2 PM on Saturday. The school says the earliest flight the team could take all together after the airport was cleared and reopened wasn’t until Sunday morning. The team will fly into New York and take a bus back to the Vermont campus.
The full Vermont statement is below:
On behalf of the UVM athletic department, I’d like to thank everyone for their concern and support of our swimming & diving team that was in the Fort Lauderdale airport yesterday at the time of the shooting incident.
While our students, coaches and staff were not in the terminal where the shooting occurred, the scene in their terminal became quite unsettled and resulted in a hurried and chaotic evacuation. During the evacuation, three of our athletes were injured. One was treated at the hospital for a broken foot and the other two were treated by a UVM athletic trainer who is accompanying the team.
After being evacuated from their terminal, the team was moved to several different holding areas around the airport grounds. They were finally “released” around 8 p.m. last night and made it to their hotel at about 9 p.m.
The team is booked on a flight for early Sunday morning through the New York area and will then bus to Burlington. This was the first available flight out of Florida for this size group and it is very important to us that they not be split up on various itineraries.
I’ve been in regular contact with our head coach, Gerry Cournoyer, who along with his three assistant coaches and our athletic trainer have done an amazing job of leading and caring for our students through a very traumatic experience. We have staff from Counseling and Psychiatry Services (CAPS) on call and are prepared to support the team and individual students in whatever ways are needed.
Thank you again for all of your concern,