One of victims in Virginia Tech shooting rampage Monday is Prof Liviu Librescu, senior researcher at university. Librescu was killed after he stayed behind his class to block door and protect students. Massacre claimed lives of 32 people.
Witnesses described the professors actions a heroic: One of Lebrescu’s students, Alec Calhoun said “When students realized the sounds were gunshots, they started flipping over desks for hiding places. Others dashed to the windows of the second-floor classroom, kicking out the screens and jumping from the ledge of the room.” Calhoun said that just before he climbed out the window, he turned to look at the professor (Librescu), who had stayed behind to block the door. He was killed by gunshots while attempting to block the gunman’s entrance.
Prof Librescu and his wife are both Holocaust survivors who immigrated to Israel from Romania . the Communist regime had tried to prevent him from immigrating.
Update: Don’t miss Siggy’s beautiful and moving post of this morning, Loss, Lessons And Life
The professor that lived- who had every right to live– died doing what he could not do in the terrible times through which he lived. He saved the lives of children.
The last moments on this earth of the man who survived the Holocaust, and carried the burden for decades of unspoken horrors and loss, were spent saving children. That was his reflexive reaction. He would not bear witness to any more deaths. He had seen enough of that. He was to leave this world as someone who gave life.
The same article also talks about the heroism of Derek O’Dell, who also blocked a doorway and dodged a hail of bullets to protect his fellow students. Other students joined him, and they successfully kept the gunman from entering the classroom. O’Dell survived with a bullet wound to the arm.
On Sheep, Wolves, and Sheepdogs, by Dave Grossman
When violence or threats of violence are considered legitimate forms of political or social expression, inevitably violence or threats of violence will manifest themselves.Terror has becomes an accepted form of political and social expression, that status granted by those who most profess to be non violent or peaceful.
(Siggy had an earlier post yesterday that also relates to violence)
I agree with Dennis Prager that this early healing talk is both foolish and immoral
This whole notion of instant healing (like its twin, instant forgiveness) is also morally wrong.
First, it is narcissistic. It focuses on me and my pain, not on the murderer and the murdered.
Second, it is almost obscene to talk of our healing when the bodies of the murdered are still lying in their blood on the very spot they were slaughtered. Our entire focus of attention must be on them and on the unspeakable suffering of their loved ones, not on the pain of the student body and the Virginia Tech “community.”
This notion of instant healing and preoccupation with the feelings of the peripherally involved, as opposed to the feelings of the directly hurt and anger over the evil committed, are functions of the psychotherapeutic culture in which we live.
Update: Suzanette tells us that one of the people killed was graduate engineering student Juan Ramon Ortiz Ortiz, 26, from Bayamon, PR (article in Spanish). He is survived by his wife Liselle, who is also a graduate student at VaTech. My condolences to his family.
Update 2: Neocon Express
Media is reporting that ALL of Professor Liviu Librescu’s students survived the attack (by jumping out the window) while Professor Librescu blocked the door to the room with his body giving the students time to escape. He was apparently shot through the door by the gunman.