Group returns after massive blizzard back East

Posted at 3:20 PM, Jan 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-25 16:32:15-05

Today, a group of students and their chaperones finally return home after a massive snow storm on the East Coast left them stranded.    

Emotions ran high as students were greeted by parents.

"I knew she was okay because I was texting with her,” says Shelly Philbin, a parent. “But just to have her here, and know that she's back home and – she's okay.”

Philbin’s daughter, Samantha, broke down when got off the bus late Monday morning at St. Gerald Catholic Church.

“I was just happy to see her. She made me cry though,” she says.

The group went to Washington, D.C. to be part of  the March for Life, an anti-abortion demonstration held to protest the Roe v. Wade decision, but cut their trip short by a day and left Friday to avoid the storm.

Yet, they didn't.

"'I've gone on a lot of March for Life pilgrimage and this one – I can't deny it was a hardship in that we we're stuck,” says Belinda Keiter, who served as a bus captain during the trip. “We weren't sure what was going on."

For 19 hours in rural Pennsylvania, more than 300 students and chaperones were stuck on their busses.

However,  they say they found ways to pass the time by playing games, listening to music, sleeping and even holding mass.

Yet, students say this experience will be unforgettable in more ways than one.

 “It really brought out the kindness of a bunch of other people,” says Bridgette Moynahan, a student. “We had people come and deliver pizza to us. We had a hotel that was closed for the winter open up just for us and give us a discount.”

Her classmate, Molly Sambol agrees.

"We were just surrounded by the same type of people who had the same type of beliefs and so it was just an amazing experience