In the aftermath of the April 16 tragedy, many of the 32 families gathered together and discussed the possibility of creating a foundation to care for the survivors and family members left behind. They recognized the need to ensure that the survivors would be taken care of for the rest of their lives and that the parents, siblings and children left behind may need assistance also. But they did not just focus on themselves.
They also knew that collectively they could help others who may experience the same loss. They knew they had to try to prevent future tragedies on our nation’s campuses. And they also knew they wanted to create a living legacy for the 32 lives who were lost.
More families of those who died joined with some survivors and survivor families to embrace this selfless mission. On June 10, 2007, they all became one. They requested that the Commonwealth of Virginia set aside funds for a “charitable purposes” foundation. Virginia granted their wish. Their desire to create something beautiful out of something so tragic was realized.
Not only had they become a family, they had also embraced helping others. Like those who died, these family members are committed to making the world a better place, to give of themselves, and to grant solace to those who suffer. They welcome all who would join in their efforts to ease the pain of others, make our campuses safe and secure and create memorable dedications to the 32 lost that day.