BUFFALO, N.Y. - The 240 current students at Holy Angels found out about the decision to close the school in an assembly Tuesday afternoon.
Tuesday night, they shared their feelings at a rally outside the school. The announcement hit every girl differently.
WEB EXTRA: Photo Gallery from the rally and photos from alumni
"It was the worst. Like everybody was crying. Like, I was looking for my sister. It was shocking," says freshman Kirsten Lewis.
Her sister, Tori, is a junior who, unless a major donor comes forward, will not be getting a Holy Angels diploma.
"Me and my sister were talking about it and we were like oh we can turn the lights off, oh we can go without heat in the winter. Anything to keep our school. Like, I still can't realize that our school is closing. Like, this is still a shock," says Kirsten.
Erin McCormick helped organize the rally. The junior class president is determined to make sure the Class of 2013 isn't the last at Holy Angels.
"I am graduating from Holy Angels Academy. There is no other school for me. Holy Angels is my school and that is where I am graduating from. I am receiving my NYS diploma from Holy Angels Academy," says McCormick.
Thanks to social media, word quickly spread to former students who are equally as surprised.
"My year, we had a lot of girls come from Villa for senior year because they had just closed, so I feel bad for them that they're not going to have the full Holy Angels experience," says Lauren Shelley.
Shelley, a 2007 graduate, spent four years at Holy Angels. And, she hopes the girls remain strong.
"One of our taglines when we went there was aim high, be an angel. So I just want to tell them keep being angels. No matter where they go. If they go to Sacred Heart, if they go to Mount Saint Mary's. If they go to a public school, it doesn't matter. They still have those Holy Angels values. They can still be those leaders and they can still aim high," she says.
"It sucks and I just don't want it to end. I want to get a school ring like my sister and show her, and I want to have prom pictures from there and it sucks. It's just like one big family," says Kirsten.
Some graduates have organized a fundraiser for the Grey Nuns. It's at Fat Bobs this coming Monday from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. It'll cost $25 at the door. And, there will be a 50-50 raffle. The women really want to thank the nuns who donated their retirement to try to save the school.