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Plattsburgh State students reflect on the tragedy at Virginia Tech PDF Print E-mail
Written by STEPHEN BARTLETT, Staff Writer   
Wednesday, April 18, 2007

PLATTSBURGH — Before Monday's bloodbath at Virginia Tech, Laura Halm wouldn't have worried about a shooting at Plattsburgh State.
"But I'm sure none of those students expected to be killed in class," said the senior.
She learned about the massacre through CNN and wondered why more students didn't remain in their rooms after the first shooting that morning.
"I wouldn't have gone to class."
Early Monday morning, 23-year-old Virginia Tech student Cho Seung-Hui opened fire on the Blacksburg school's campus, in two attacks in fewer than three hours killing 33 people, including himself.
Plattsburgh State students expressed sadness, surprise, outrage and fear over the killings, some questioning how safe they now feel.
Students plan to gather at 9:30 p.m. Thursday for a candlelight vigil in the Amite Plaza between Angell College Center and the Myers Fine Arts Building.
"It's scary," said Plattsburgh State junior Jen Seeger. "My first thought was it could happen to anybody. It could happen anywhere."
As questions arose over how long it took for Virginia Tech officials to advise students, through campus e-mails, to remain in their rooms, Seeger wondered how effectively Plattsburgh State would spread the word if such an incident occurred at her college.
"Security here is all right, I guess," she said. "I see a lot of University Police going by."
Seeger can't believe the shooter was able to kill so many people.
"Something must trigger people to take this course of action," said Plattsburgh State graduate student Robert Lewis.
He initially doubted friends when they told him what had happened at Virginia Tech. As he digested the news, he recalled past shootings around the country.
"I thought, here we go again."
Still, Lewis doesn't worry about a similar event happening at his college. At least, he tries not to think about it.
"I feel safe here. Of course, I never really feel unsafe anywhere."
But Lisa Breslin was terrified Monday after her mother called to tell her about the tragedy.
"You never really know what is going on with people," said the Plattsburgh State student. "Everyone has their own issues, and you can't tell by looking at them what is going on with people."
Some students questioned the media's coverage of Monday's tragedy.
Plattsburgh State graduate student Brian Grant felt the media was "unfeeling" in the way it bombarded people with footage of the incident, using slogans such as "Massacre at Virginia Tech." Such reporting desensitizes people, he said.
"I feel for the families," Grant said. "They need time to grieve in their own way."

 

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