How do you rebuild after such devastating horror?
"I think the country would be proud if they were able to witness what we've done here in a year," said Virginia Tech basketball coach Seth Greenberg. "We were a very close knit campus before the tragedy. Now we're even closer.
|There has been tremendous outreach to Virginia Tech, including from the New York Yankees. (Getty Images)|
This week marks the first anniversary of Virginia Tech student Seung-Hui Cho's violent rampage in which he gunned down 32 classmates and injured some 26 others, making it the deadliest school shooting in American history.
Greenberg has watched Virginia Tech's impressive journey from a school brought to its knees to one slowly getting back on its feet. He's seen the activists created out of the bloody chaos, the students who refused to be intimidated and players from across the Hokie athlete spectrum who collectively helped to serve as a rigid backbone.
The killings on April 16, 2007 by Cho not only exemplified America's terrible fascination with guns and the ease with which they can be purchased (even by psychopaths) but also how frighteningly simple it is for someone armed to the teeth to invade a college campus.
The lesson is this: What happened then could easily happen again. What's different now? What's changed about the gun laws to keep mentally deranged individuals from garnering them?
While there were stricter gun control measures enacted following the Virginia Tech shootings, there still remains some cruise-ship sized holes in the system, mainly because a psychopath could still skirt some of the measures by purchasing a weapon at a gun show.
After Columbine we swore as a nation that would be the last time we allowed our own to be slaughtered in classrooms. Then came Seung-Hui Cho.
Yet after the Virginia Tech murders we also witnessed the good in people, the altruistic. Instead of picking up weapons we saw people grab their checkbooks as donations poured in. So did the gestures of sympathy from around the world. They continue today.
We saw the New York Yankees donate $1 million to the school. They would later visit the 32 stone memorials erected as a tribute to the dead.
We've seen pop singers donate their time and money and leaders provide their good will and pocketbooks.
On a week like this the petty squabbles about which NFL Draft prospect is the best or who should be the Most Valuable Player in the NBA seem infantile and worthless as we remember the ugliness that took place in Virginia.