Bush mourns death of 32 people in campus violence

Published: Wednesday, April 18, 2007, 8:32 [IST]
 

Washington, Apr 18: US President George W Bush joined Virginia's governor &13;and dozens of other state and campus leaders to bring comfort to the students, &13;faculty and staff of Virginia Tech a day after a 23-year-old student shot 32 &13;people to death before killing himself.''Laura and I have come to Blacksburg today with hearts full of sorrow,'' the &13;president said yesterday. ''This is a day of sadness for our entire nation.'' &13;The President and Governor Timothy Kaine, who flew back overnight from a trade &13;mission in Asia, decided to join a convocation for a university and town &13;reeling after the worst massacre in American history. So many people showed up &13;for the session in the school's basketball arena that thousands of students &13;were sent to Lane Field, the university's 50,000-seat football stadium.

In a six-minute touching address, Bush said, ''Those whose lives were taken &13;did nothing to deserve their fate. They were simply in the wrong place at the &13;wrong time.'' ''I hope you know that people all over this country are thinking &13;about you and asking God to provide comfort for all who have been affected,'' &13;he added.

Kaine said the world had been inspired by the response of the campus and the &13;surrounding community. ''It's not just you that needs to maintain that spirit, &13;but the world needs you to,'' he said. ''The world saw you and saw you respond &13;in a way that builds community. The world needs that example before it.'' &13;Zenobia Hikes, the university's vice president for student affairs, captured &13;that spirit when she said, ''We will eventually recover, but we will never, &13;ever forget.'' Thirty three people were declared dead after the bloodbath &13;Monday, including the gunman, whom police identified as Cho Seung-Hui, of &13;Centreville, Va, a senior in the English Department.

Cho was a resident alien who immigrated to the United States from South Korea &13;in 1992.

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