BEAUREGARD, AL (WTVM) - Kids returning to school at Beauregard Elementary School for the first time since tornadoes destroyed their community were in for a surprise this morning.
Auburn University’s basketball team, cheerleaders and beloved mascot, Aubie the Tiger, were lined up outside the school waiting to greet them as they drove up. Auburn’s head basketball coach and players handed out high fives, pencils, and bracelets.
A total of four students died as a result of the storm that hit Lee County. Two were enrolled at Beauregard Elementary.
“There’s a lot of healing that needs to take place," said Auburn head basketball corach, Bruce Pearl. “We’re here to support the teachers, welcome the kids back, and maybe put a smile on their face because they’ve been away from school. You can tell that kids were glad to get back and our players were glad to be here. I asked for volunteers and the entire team showed up.”
Many of these students and their families lost everything in the storm. Beauregard Elementary Principal Lisa Harris said they are doing everything they can to help.
“We do have a lot of families displaced right now," said Harris. "They are in different addresses and different hotels. Mr. Lindsey is our bus transportation director and he he has worked diligently to have buses running in all Auburn and in Opelika. They are picking up our students.”
Harris said they’re not taking any clothing or food donations, but they are accepting gift cards like to Target or Wal-Mart.
Check out some photos of the groups welcoming students in our gallery below.