Security was heightened at four Ken-Ton District schools Monday, after a report to police about a man seen with a handgun at a nearby gas station who was overheard saying, “It’s time to lock and load,” police and school officials said.

Hoover Elementary and Middle schools, Lindbergh Elementary and Kenmore West High were all in lockdown. There was nothing to suggest a specific threat against schools or children, but school officials acted out of an abundance of caution.

Town of Tonawanda Police Lt. Nick Bado said police got a call about 7:20 a.m. from a person who said he was at the Mobil-Tim Hortons at Highland Parkway and Colvin Boulevard when a man cut through the lot on foot. The witness said the man was in his 60s or 70s, had a white beard and was wearing a gray shirt, jeans and a baseball cap. He appeared to be carrying a black handgun and said: “It’s time to lock and load.” A letter was sent home to parents of students from the locked down schools.

A letter was sent home to parents of the locked out schools to explain the situation. Click here to read the text of the letter.