CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Charryse Johnson, a licensed professional health counselor, has lived in the Matthews area since 2008. She says she knows several students who attend Butler High School. Her own daughter graduated from the school just last year.
Because of her personal connection to the school and the community, Johnson was shocked to hear about the deadly shooting that took place Monday morning at Butler.
“We’ve seen the news, but there’s nothing like when it hits home,” said Johnson in an interview Tuesday night.
The therapist says she was in an airport when she got word of the shooting. Several people started sending her messages about the incident.
“My phone is going off. I’ve got my husband calling, my daughter calling – getting in texts and information,” explained Johnson.
She said some students from the school contacted her soon after the shooting. Johnson said some of the kids were exposed to an active crime scene.
“Those are visual images that don’t become erased from your mind and they weren’t ready,” explained the counselor.
Johnson works at Presbyterian Psychological Services in south Charlotte. She says that after hearing about all that had transpired at the high school, she felt compelled to help out. She took to social media, explaining that she would offer assistance to any students or parents who may be in need.
“I just felt call to action. I felt like ‘what would I want my own child to have?’” said Johnson.
She said she is available to speak with people in-person, but also by phone or through Facebook. She explained that the moments where students might be in need will likely come after business hours.
“I want to make sure really that they have a lifeline and at the least I can talk with them, talk them down if they’re feeling overwhelmed,” said Johnson.
If you or someone you know would like to speak with Johnson about what happened at Butler High School, you can reach her by phone at 980-236-1511 or through Facebook at ‘Charryse Johnson MA LPC’.