Please allow me to post this short article on a topic outside of our norm. I am a graduate of Virginia Tech, grew up in Blacksburg, and have parents living about 1 mile from the campus. One of my brothers graduated from the university as did my father. My great-grandfather graduated from the university before the beginning of the 20th century. My ties are long and deep.
I do not feel anger or hatred toward the shooter. He was obviously a sick and demented individual. I do have sympathy for the victims, their families and friends. I do not know how they will overcome this tragedy. I don’t know if I could overcome such unspeakable tragedy if we lost one of our two sons in such a meaningless and vile manner. I am profoundly sad!
There will be better days for Virginia Tech, its students, faculty, staff, and alums…but it will take time to heal. I want to share with you what a friend sent me today which is reported to have been written by Homer Hickam, author of “Rocket Boys” and a Virginia Tech graduate, and sent to Virginia Tech President Charles Steger. The letter read in part as follows:
“Today, there is pain everywhere in our community, and our hearts are troubled. Yet, I am certain our university will persevere. The spirit of Virginia Tech cannot allow otherwise. We who once walked its halls and studied in its classrooms were trained to represent all that is good and right in the world, and we will prevail. Evil can never succeed, not while there are yet men and women like the people of Virginia Tech who reach every day for success, and endeavor for the improvement of the human condition across the planet.”
I hope he is right!