12 years ago, on an unusually cold and uncomfortable day, Virginia Tech became a name whispered by many people who had never heard of the place before. It was horrendous. It was frightening. It was brutally sad and unspeakably tragic.
As in many acts of unfathomable evil, there came some hope. The incident itself was full of selfless acts of courage and love. The university and Hokie Nation took the pain, and instead of being mired in despair turned the agony into confidence. No, Hokie Nation wasn’t about triumph. This university and its alumni remembered the motto of Ut Prosim. The grief was turned into determination to do good things for the others around us.
We received beautiful, thoughtful gifts to help heal the wounds. We looked to turn those gifts into good and those thoughts into actions.
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University is the same place that it was on April 15th; beautiful, stately, aging gracefully in the quiet peace of the mountains of Home. On April 17th it was still all of those things, again. Though smaller and in pain we were stronger and more determined that purpose and unity would come of the events of April 16, 2007.
May those who lost their lives rest in eternal peace; forever remembered and greatly loved. May the survivors live blessed and fulfilled lives of purpose and grace.
May all of us who wept and mourned remember our lost brothers and sisters by living lives of meaning and service.
And may the ringing refrain of “WE ARE VIRGINIA TECH” keep us a family forever.