I have not posted anything new for days due to a physical ailment. Then, the tragedy at Virginia Tech happened. I know I must be like so many who are so deeply saddened by this event that it is difficult to talk about it.
But yet, we must talk about it. Virginia Tech has become a special place to me because of really close friends and family who have strong ties there. I was last on campus in 2006 on a beautiful October weekend to attend a Hokie-style tail gate party that was a prelude to Virginia Tech playing my undergraduate university. The Hokies won handily, but I didn’t care. I was so impressed with Virginia Tech. It is a magnificent university with a lovely campus located in a stunningly beautiful area of my beloved Virginia.
My daughter-in-law’s brother, Chris, a terrific human being and probably the most ardent Virginia Tech supporter, bet me a cap on the outcome of that football game. I lost, so I had to wear a Virginia Tech cap the rest of the weekend. I wore it happily, and now I wear it as a tribute to those who were lost and injured and to all those who love them and now suffer beyond our imagining.
I love my students. But now, I lock my classroom door, I listen more intently to everything they say, I savor every moment in the classroom with these magnificent people, and I pray for their safety and well-being.
Later, there can be lessons on subjects like crisis communication planning. But not today. Today we grieve, we remember, we support, and we contemplate. We hold in our hearts those who have been so grievously damaged by this tragedy. We search our souls for ways to build a better future for all concerned.