The Army soldier charged with killing 13 and leaving another 30 injured at Foot Hood, Texas, graduated from Virginia Tech, served in the Reserve Officer Training Corps. (ROTC) and had “difficulties” that required counseling while interning at Walter Reed medical center in Arlington.
Once again, Tech is linked to a brutal crime that shocks the nation. While the University cannot be blamed with creating another mass murderer, it reminds people that the of the worst shooting rampage on American soil in April 2007 and comes on the heels of the murder of two Tech students shortly after classes convened this fall. Tech not makes more national headlines for its links to shocking crimes than for its national sports aspirations.
Other colleges and universities have crime but how many had a student with a history of mental illness kill 32 and wound many others? How many had a Chinese exchange student behead his former lover with a kitchen knife at an Au Bon Pain Cafe on campus? How many mourned the loss of two students killed in a national forest right after the start of the fall term? How many universities locked down the campus on the first day of a new term because a suspect escaped from a nearby hospital and killed a security guard and deputy sheriff?
Nidal Malik Nasar did not commit his bloody crime at Tech or even in the area, but news that the Arlington native graduated from Tech comes during another national story: The search for missing Tech coed Morgan Harrington, who disappeared while attending a Metallica concert at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.
Why so much violence centered around one university in Southwestern Virginia?
I don’t know but I’m sure that question will become the subject more than one post-graduate thesis in the future.