Cadets honor April 16th victims with Memorial Guard

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Blacksburg, Va., Apr. 12 – April 16th Memorial Guard: As the 10th anniversary of the Virginia Tech shootings approaches, cadets have already started preparing for their role of guarding the memorial during the candle lighting on the night of April 16th. Photo: David Jones

by David Jones–

Spring is a time for change and a time of renewing what was lost into something beautiful again. Even Virginia Tech knows exactly what it’s like to have lost and to become whole again.

April 16, 2017, marks the 10th anniversary of the Virginia Tech shootings in which 32 Hokies lost their lives. Every year the university does, in many ways, its part to honor the memory of those who were taken too soon. This year will have a very special tribute in store, as members of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets have prepared to do their part during this emotional time.

The Corps found a way to honor the deceased. The candle lighting, which took place at midnight on April 16, 2017, was conducted in a ceremony featuring 32 cadets who were tasked with guarding each of the 32 stones that surround the front of the April 16th memorial which is located on the Drillfield.

Each cadet who held this privilege volunteered out of their love for the university and in memory of the individuals they’ll be guarding.

Noel Schaeffer, a senior member of the Corps, led the cadets’ role in the ceremonies. “Our presence that day will help ease someone’s feelings, might make some people feel certain ways but ultimately cadets are a part of the Hokie community as well and having such a prominent role in these ceremonies really helps to integrate every part of the community.”

“Our presence that day will help ease someone’s feelings, might make some people feel certain ways but ultimately cadets are a part of the Hokie community as well and having such a prominent role in these ceremonies really helps to integrate every part of the community,” Schaeffer said.

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