Author: Thomas P. Kapsidelis

a freelance journalist who worked for twenty-eight years at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, serving as the newspaper's on-site editor in charge of the Virginia Tech shootings coverage on April 16, 2007.
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Virginia Tech Shootings

On April 16, 2007, Seung-Hui Cho, a senior at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, also known as Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg, shot and killed twenty-seven students and five faculty members, and injured more than seventeen others before killing himself. At the time it was the largest mass shooting in contemporary American history perpetrated by a single gunman. Cho was born in South Korea and immigrated to the United States with his family, which settled in Centreville. He had a history of emotional and mental health problems dating to early childhood, but his parents said they were unaware that serious troubles had begun at Virginia Tech. A series of disturbing incidents led to a 2005 hearing in which he was ordered to outpatient treatment, which he never received. Despite this and other warning signs, there was no concerted follow-up by campus or mental health authorities as Cho’s condition deteriorated and he plotted mass murder. The attacks raised many questions associated with gun violence, from missed mental health signals to the availability of weapons and campus safety. Governor Timothy M. Kaine immediately appointed a panel to review the shootings and response, and make recommendations by the beginning of the 2007–2008 school year. The tragedy led to lasting reforms in how campuses in Virginia and across the nation regarded safety issues. But advocates for gun safety and those seeking a sustained focus on improving mental health services regard those efforts as having come up short. Many family and community members expressed continued disappointment with what they perceived to be the university’s lack of accountability. All of the injured students, however, returned to graduate.

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Shooting, Victims of the Virginia Tech Mass (2007)

The following is an alphabetical list of students and educators shot and killed on April 16, 2007, by Seung-Hui Cho, a senior at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, also known as Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg. The students were awarded degrees posthumously. They are listed here with their courses of study and hometown.

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