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Tragedy at Virginia Tech

By Alexander Carpenter
The Columbia Union Conference released this information, April 17, 2007.
I know the many of you are wondering if  there’s an Adventist connection to the tragedy at Virginia Tech. I  have heard from two people in the region—Jeanie Allen from Potomac Conference and Lynette Wood who teaches at the university—and they both shared great information. We’ll keep you posted if we learn more. In the meantime, our president Dave Weigley has asked that we keep all the families affected by this tragedy in prayer.
TRAGEDY AT VIRGINIA TECHby Jeanie Allen, communication assistant, Potomac Conference
Many of you have been following today’s tragedy unfolding at Virginia Tech (VT), located in Blackburg, Va, where a gunman killed 33 people, the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. At this point, we do not know of any Seventh-day Adventist student or faculty casualties.
Known Seventh-day Adventist students attending VT and accounted for include: Jason Dean (New Market, VA), Jessica McNeilus (New Market, VA), Steven Thomas (Manassas, VA), Paul Munilla (Rocky Mount, VA), and Sylvia Grove (Radford, VA). Don Wood, instructor in the Communication Department, and his wife, Lynette Wood, Assistant Professor of Accounting & Information System at Virginia Tech and members of the Radford Church are also safe.
Tom McNeilus, Shenandoah Valley Academy science and math instructor, is very thankful his daughter is safe. Jessica, an engineering student at VT, should have been in Norris Hall this morning but her professor cancelled class last evening, which very well may have saved her life.
This afternoon , the Virginia Tech Adventist Christian Fellowship, a student organization officially recognized by the university and led by Sylvia Grove, will hold a “Time of Prayer” at VT beginning at 1:00 pm at the gazebo by the duck pond. Pastor Daniel Royo (Radford church) will lead out in this prayer vigil.
Royo reports that he’s heard there are maybe 200 Adventist students currently attending Virginia Tech, but  knows only a small percentage. Royo hopes to meet more members at the prayer vigil, but wishes it could be under different circumstances. Please keep the families of those struck today with tragedy and loss in your prayers.
For more information on the Virginia Tech Adventist Christian Fellowship or if you know an Adventist attending Virginia Tech, visit their website at:

Of course let’s remember everyone involved in our prayers and if you know a student at Virginia Tech or elsewhere, feel free to talk to them as well.

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