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Va. Tech Massacre's 7th Anniversary Honored at Capitol

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The victims of the April 16, 2007, massacre at Virginia Tech will be remembered at ceremonies in Richmond and Blacksburg (Photo by Natalie Leake, Virginia Tech Class of 2014). The victims of the April 16, 2007, massacre at Virginia Tech will be remembered at ceremonies in Richmond and Blacksburg (Photo by Natalie Leake, Virginia Tech Class of 2014).
April 16, 2014 marks the seventh anniversary of the deadly mass shooting at Virginia Tech.

Gunman Seung-Hui Cho opened fire on campus and killed 32 people, wounded 17 others and then turned the gun on himself. It was the deadliest shooting rampage in U.S. history.

Across the state, families, friends and the community paid tribute to the victims of that tragedy.

On the seventh anniversary of the tragedy, a crowd united at the Capitol Square Bell Tower Wednesday morning. The bell rang 32 times - one for each life lost in the Virginia Tech shooting.

"They had such bright futures ahead of them and I know we're all saddened that we'll never know all that they would have achieved," says First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe.

This community continues to remember the lives lost and the families who still grieve.

"The strength and resilience of the Virginia Tech community and particularly of the families has been an inspiration to us all," says Paul Regan, Governor's Chief of Staff.

"I'm extremely emotional today," says Greg Gwaltney, who lost his son in the shooting. "It's a lot of tears for all of the families. Everyday gets better but it's still never the same."

"Our son Colin is a survivor of the Virginia Tech shootings and he just got engaged," says Ann Goddard. "So we're thrilled he'll be starting a whole new life. Those families we've been with this morning, some of them don't have that joy in their life. And so that's one of the reasons why we're here. We have to remember them and let them know we remember them."

But the Goddards contend the ultimate tribute to those who died would be some sort of reform that would make it easier to get mental help and more difficult to get a gun.

"If we don't learn from past mistakes, then we're going to have to relive them over and over again," says Andrew Goddard.


Copyright 2014 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond

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