Wichitans brave DC snow storm to take part in March for Life

Catholic students from Wichita take part in the 2016 March for Life rally in Washington on Jan. 22, 2016. (Media General photo)

WASHINGTON – As that major snow storm was hitting Washington, DC Friday some Wichitans were preparing to be snowed in.

The Catholic Diocese in Wichita took 13 buses filled mostly with high school students to participate in Friday’s March for Life rally.

Taking part in the annual rally is an annual tradition for Kansas Catholics.  This year, about 600 made the trip to the nation’s capitol.

This week, though, the rally is going head-to-head with a massive snow storm.

Father Daniel Duhling, who’s leading the trip, talked with us on Skype from his hotel room.  He told us the snow started to pick up just as the march began and has been falling steadily ever since.

Duhling said when they heard the forecast it left the group with a tough decision:  Either turn around and go home, or stay and not miss the march.

“Last night, we were preparing to come home,” Duhling said. “We had the kids prepared to come home this morning.  They were all a little bummed last night ’cause they wanted to get stuck in the hotel.”

Duhling said that’s what the’re planning to do until it’s safe to get back on the road home.

“The hotel that we’re at, both of them, are equipped with generators,” said Duhling. “They got in a shipment of food this morning. They’ve got meals. They’re prepared for us to stay.”

They’ve cancelled some events that were planned for Friday night and are now focusing on staying inside.

“Now, it’s gonna be keeping the kids entertained here in the hotel,” said Duhling.

Chaperones have been working to keep parents informed, but say most of been supportive of the decision.

“Of course, the safety of our students is our primary concern,” Duhling said. “And thats what really has been driving all of our decisions that we’ve been making.”

For the moment, the group hopes to be able to drive home Sunday or Monday, but say they’ll stay as long as they need to in order to make sure the drive home is safe.

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