The Facts of the Virginia Massacre
The Dead, The Injured and the Investigation So Far
April 18, 2007
This is a compilation of reporting by ABC News and other organizations on the developing investigation into the massacre at Virginia Tech. This is a developing situation and the facts are subject to change.
Today's focus is on the mental history of Seung-Hui Cho ("SOONG HEE CHO") and the emerging details as to the identities and the lives of his victims.
So far 33 people are reported dead -- 32 victims plus the gunman, Cho, who killed himself -- making this the deadliest known campus shooting rampage in American history. As of now, two victims have died from the shooting at West Ambler Johnston Hall (WAJ); 30 from the attack on Norris Hall. University staff members are among the deceased. At least two classroom doors at Norris Hall were chained shut, according to University Police.
LATEST ABOUT SEUNG-HUI CHO:
A small Korean newspaper just posted an exclusive interview on their website with Cho's grandfather, living in Korea. The report says Cho's parents operated a used-book store before coming to the U.S. (where they operate a dry cleaning operation). It notes that Cho's parents emigrated to "provide better education for the children." The grandfather continues: "My grandson Seung-Hui was very shy. I can't believe he did such a thing." (Kreisel/ Korea Buro)
Cho's sister and family MAY make statement AT SOME POINT. This reportedly according to the Korean American Coalition. It is unclear when this statement might occur but we have a call in and will distribute any information IF AND WHEN it becomes available.
At the 10:00 AM press conference today, officials revealed a history of potentially threatening behavior towards women and suicidal ideation:
Fall 2005: Professor Lucinda Roy shared concerns about Cho with the campus police. The police say: "No criminal violation had taken place." No formal report was filed.
AROUND November 27, 2005: "He made contact with a female student [by phone and in person]. She notified VA Tech. Student declined to press charges. She said the conduct was annoying. It was referred to disciplinary system -- office of judicial affairs."
December 13, 2005: Police "received report that he IM'd a second female student" the previous day. "There was no threat made," police say. "She made complaints with VA tech police dept -- and asked that he have no further contact with her."
Later that day the police got a call from an acquaintance of Cho's concerned he might be suicidal. Officers then met with Cho and asked that he speak with counselor -- and Cho was taken to a mental health facility: Carilion Saint Albans Behavioral Health Center.
From CNN: After being confronted by police about his strange behavior "he told me that he might as well kill himself." One former roommate says… "And so I told the cops that. And they took him away to the counseling center for a night or two." (CNN)
Notably, he could have been taken to the on-campus Cook Counseling Center, but he was not.
Former stalking victims speak: Two 22-year-old Virginia Tech seniors, Holly Huse and Christina Lilick, said in interviews with USA TODAY that they had received a barrage of unwanted instant messages and phone calls from Cho last year. They said they became concerned enough by what they called "stalking" that they reported the matter to the resident advisers in their dorm. (USA Today) It is unclear if these are additional victims or the same victims mentioned in the campus presser today.
According to the AP: Cho was "a question mark": on the first day of a British literature class last year, the 30 or so students went around and introduced themselves. When it was Cho's turn, he didn't speak. On the sign-in sheet where everyone else had written their names, Cho had written a question mark. "Is your name, `Question mark?"' classmate Julie Poole recalled the professor asking. The young man offered little response.
Former roommates also said on CNN today that Cho would call them and only identify himself as "Question Mark."
Cho spent much of that class sitting in the back of the room, wearing a hat and seldom participating. "We just really knew him as the question mark kid," Poole said. (AP)
"We always joked we were just waiting for him to do something, waiting to hear about something he did," said another classmate, Stephanie Derry. "But when I got the call it was Cho who had done this, I started crying, bawling." (AP)
Roommates speak: His bizarre behavior became even less predictable in recent weeks, roommates Joseph Aust and Karan Grewal said. Grewal had pulled an all-nighter on homework the day of the shootings and saw Cho at around 5 a.m. (GMA) Grewal also said he never saw any weapons. (AP)
In recent weeks Cho's habits changed. He ventured out at night to the campus gym, lifting weights to beef up his skinny frame.
Other roommates tell CNN that Cho once told them he had an imaginary girlfriend he called "Jelly." And that she called him "Spanky."
Contrary to previous reports, there were no medications found in Cho's room according to the 10:00 am presser.
VA. GOV. ORDERS INVESTIGATION INTO UNIVERSITY'S HANDLING:
Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) ordered an independent review yesterday of Virginia Tech's handling of Monday's massacre after 24 hours of criticism that the university waited too long to inform students and faculty of a potential danger.
Kaine's announcement came in response to a request from the school's president and board of visitors that the governor takes the lead in finding a group of credible, experienced outside examiners.
He said the investigation will cover actions taken Monday and questions about whether university officials were warned earlier that the shooter, Cho Seung Hui, was troubled.
ABOUT THE VICTIMS -- NAMES WE KNOW TO DATE:
32 DECEASED, *ALL* OF WHOM HAVE BEEN IDENTIFIED IN MEDIA REPORTS.
A Look at Some of the Students and Faculty Killed
1. Professor Jamie Bishop, 35, (full name Christopher James Bishop) He was teaching German at the time of the shooting.
Bishop wore his hair long, rode his bike to campus and worked alongside his wife in the foreign languages department at Virginia Tech.
Colleagues confirmed that Bishop, 35, was among the 33, including the shooter, killed during the rampage. (Roanoke Times)
Profile & photo: http://www.fdi.vt.edu/presenters/bishop_jamie.html
2. Professor Jocelyne Couture-Nowak
Originally from Montreal. Was one of 32 people killed by a gunman at Virginia Tech in Monday's tragedy, state police have confirmed. Jocelyne Couture-Nowak, taught French in Virginia Tech's department of foreign languages. (CBC News)
Her husband, Jerzy Nowak, is the head of the horticulture department at Virginia Tech
3. Professor Kevin Granata, 45
Engineering Science and Mathematics Professor "killed while serving Virginia Tech," (according to an e-mail sent out by the head of the ESM department at 11:39 pm on Monday.)
The Associated Press reports a colleague describing Granata as one of the top biomechanics researchers in the country working on movement dynamics in cerebral palsy.
Profile & photo: http://www.esm.vt.edu/php/person.php?id=10012
4. Professor Liviu Librescu (LIV-ee-oo lih-BRESS-cue), 76, Israel
Engineering science and mathematics lecturer. Was a holocaust survivor. (AP)
Confirmed by his wife, Marlon. Librescu had taught at Virginia Tech for 22 years and had been married for 42 years.
The class schedule indicates Librescu was teaching Solid Mechanics in room 204 in Norris Hall.
"His research has enabled better aircraft, superior composite materials, and more robust aerospace structures," said Ishwar K. Puri, the head of the engineering science and mechanics department. (AP)
Librescu's son, Joe, said his father's students sent e-mails detailing how the professor saved their lives by closing the doorway of his classroom against the approaching gunman. (AP)
"My father blocked the doorway with his body and asked the students to flee," Joe Librescu said Tuesday in a telephone interview from his home outside of Tel Aviv. "Students started opening windows and jumping out." (AP)
Here is his website, which includes his photo: http://www.esm.vt.edu/php/person.php?id=10023
5. Professor G.V. Loganathan, 51, India
Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering. Been a professor at Virginia Tech since 1982.
Loganathan, 51, won several awards for excellence in teaching, had served on the faculty senate and was an adviser to about 75 undergraduate students. (AP)
"We all feel like we have had an electric shock. We do not know what to do," his brother G.V. Palanivel told the NDTV news channel from the southern India state of Tamil Nadu. "He has been a driving force for all of us, the guiding force."
6. Ross Abdallah Alameddin, 20, Saugus, Mass. Sophomore English, Business Technology and French Major, according to his mother Lynnette Alameddin. (CBS5)
The Boston Herald reports that Alameddin, a graduate of Austin Preparatory School in Reading, was in French class in Room 211 of Norris Hall when he was shot. Messages from friends and family members were pouring in all day on Alameddine's Facebook page, begging him to get in touch with anyone.
7. Brian Bluhm, 25, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Graduate Student, Civil Engineering
8. Ryan Clark, 22, Martinez, Ga.
Was a fifth year student working towards a triple-degree in psychology, biology and English, and had a 4.0 GPA. (CBS5)
Resident Advisor shot at West Ambler Johnston dormitory ( New York Times.) A student resident adviser at the West Ambler Johnston Hall dormitory,
Clark was apparently rushing over to investigate what was going on when he came upon the gunman. Clark well-liked and a member of the university's marching band, the Marching Virginians
The band's Web site has an image of him participating in a food drive and says he enjoyed, among other things, "making t-shirts with his partner in crime, Kim Daniloski, and haggling with street vendors."
9. Austin Cloyd, 19, Charlotte, N.C. Freshman, International Studies and French. Grew up in Champaign, Illinois.
She was attending French class when she was killed. (CBS5)
Her father Bryan Cloyd is a professor of accounting and information systems at Virginia Tech.
10. Daniel Perez Cueva, 21, Peru Native of Peru studying international relations, according to his mother, Betty Cueva. (AP)
According to his mother, Betty Cueva, he was killed while in French class.
11. Matthew Gwaltney, 24, Chester, Va.
A graduate student in civil and environmental engineering, according to his father and stepmother, Greg and Linda Gwaltney.
12. Caitlin Hammaren, 19, Westtown, N.Y.
Sophomore, International Studies and French
13. Jeremy Herbstritt, 27, Bellefonte, Pa.
Graduate Student, Civil Engineering. Had 2 undergraduate degrees from Penn State, one in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in 2003, and another in civil engineering from 2006.
Herbstritt loved to chat, so much so that high school classmates voted him "Most Talkative." (AP)
He grew up on a small farm just outside the central Pennsylvania borough of Bellefonte, where his father, Michael, raised cattle and sheep. (AP)
"He liked to work on machinery, take a lot of stuff apart and fixed it," said his grandfather Thomas Herbstritt, 77, of St. Marys. "He was a studious kid."(AP) 14. Rachael Hill, 18, Glen Allen, Va.
Hill, an only child, was popular and funny, had a penchant for shoes and was competitive on the volleyball court. (AP)
"Rachael was a very bright, articulate, intelligent, beautiful, confident, poised young woman. She had a tremendous future in front of her," said Clay Fogler, administrator for the Grove Avenue School. "Obviously, the Lord had other plans for her." (AP)
15. Emily Jane Hilscher, 19, Woodville, Va. Freshman identified by other students on her floor as one of two students killed at the West Ambler Johston dormitory. Came to Virginia Tech from rural Rappahannock County and was majoring in animal and poultry sciences.
This year, Emily Jane Hilscher and Ryan Clark lived next door to each other on the fourth floor of West Ambler Johnston Hall -- in rooms 4040 and 4042. (New York Times, Richmond Times-Dispatch).
She was known around her town as an animal lover. "She worked at a veterinarian's office and cared about them her whole life," said Rappahannock County Administrator John W. McCarthy, a family friend. (AP)
16. Matthew La Porte, 20, Dumont, N.J. Freshman, Political Science and leadership. Was attending Virginia Tech on an Air Force ROTC scholarship and belonged to the school's Corps of Cadets. (AP)
A 2005 graduate of the Carson Long Military Institute in Perry County, PA (CBS5) "Matthew was an exemplary student at Carson Long whose love of music and fellow cadets were an inspiration to all on campus," the school said in a statement. (AP)
According to his profile on a music Web site, La Porte's favorite artists were Meshuggah, Metallica, Soundgarden, Creed and Live. (AP)
17. Jarrett Lee Lane, 22, Narrows, Va.
Senior, Civil Engineering. He was valedictorian of his high school class.
His high school put up a memorial to Lane that included pictures, musical instruments and his athletic jerseys.
Lane played the trombone, ran track and played football and basketball at Narrows High School. "We're just kind of binding together as a family," Principal Robert Stump said.
"He had a caring heart and was a friend to everyone he met," brother-in-law Daniel Farrell said. "We are leaning on God's grace in these trying hours."
18. Henry Lee, Roanoke, Va.
Freshman, Computer Engineering and French
19. Partahi Lumbantoruan, 34, Indonesia
Civil Engineering Doctoral student (CBS5)
20. Lauren Ashley McCain, 20, Hampton, Va.
Class of 2010, International Studies.
On her MySpace page, McCain listed "the love of my life" as Jesus Christ.
Her family said the 20-year-old international studies major became a Christian some time ago.
"Her life since that time has been filled with His love that continued to overflow to touch everyone who knew her," the family said in a statement.
Her uncle, Jeff Elliott, told The Oklahoman newspaper that she was an avid reader, was learning German and had almost mastered Latin. She was home-schooled, he said, and had worked at a department store for about a year to save money for college.
She spent several years of her childhood in Oklahoma but her father's Navy career also took the family to Florida, Texas and then to Virginia.
21. Daniel O'Neil, 22, Lafeyette, R.I.
Friend Steve Craveiro described him as smart, responsible and a hard worker, someone who never got into trouble. (AP)
"He would come home from school over the summer and talk about projects, about building bridges and stuff like that," Craveiro said. "He loved his family. He was pretty much destined to be extremely successful. He just didn't deserve to have happen what happened." (AP)
O'Neil graduated in 2002 from Lincoln High School in Rhode Island and graduated from Lafayette College in Easton, Pa., before heading to Virginia Tech, where he was also a teaching assistant, Craveiro said. (AP)
22. Juan Ramon Ortiz, 26, Puerto Rico
Ortiz was teaching a class as part of his graduate program in civil engineering at Virginia Tech. He was a teaching assistant. (AP)
The family's neighbors in the San Juan suburb of Bayamon remembered Ortiz as a quiet, dedicated son who decorated his parents' one-story concrete house each Christmas and played in a salsa band with his father on weekends. (AP)
"He was an extraordinary son, what any father would have wanted," said Ortiz's father, also named Juan Ramon Ortiz.
Marilys Alvarez, 22, heard Ortiz's mother scream from the house next door when she learned of her son's death. Alvarez said she had wanted to study in the United States, but was now reconsidering. (AP)
"Here the violence is bad, but you don't see that," she said. "It's really sad. You can't go anywhere now." (AP)
23. Minal Panchal, 26, India Panchal, 26, wanted to be an architect like her father, who died four years ago.
She was very keen to go to the United States for postgraduate studies and thrilled when she gained admission last year, said Chetna Parekh, a friend who lives in the bustling middle-class Mumbai neighborhood of Borivali, India, where Panchal lived before coming to Virginia Tech. "She was a brilliant student and very hardworking. She was focussed on getting her degree and doing well." (AP)
Panchal was worried about her mother, Hansa, living alone and wanted her to come to the U.S., neighbor Jayshree Ajmane said. Hansa left earlier this month for New Jersey, where her sister and brother-in-law live. (AP)
Ajmane called Panchal a bright, polite girl who would help the neighborhood children with their schoolwork. (AP)
24. Erin Peterson, Va.
Similar to Samaha, Peterson graduated three years after Cho from Westfield High School. Authorities haven't said whether Cho knew the two young women and singled them out. (AP)
25. Michael Steven Pohle Jr., 23, Flemington, N.J.
Pohle, 23, of Flemington, N.J., was expected to graduate in a few weeks with a degree in biological sciences, said Craig Blanton, Hunterdon Central's vice principal during the 2002 school year, when Pohle graduated. (AP)
"He had a bunch of job interviews and was all set to start his post-college life," Blanton told The Star-Ledger of Newark. (AP)
At the high school, Pohle played on the football and lacrosse teams. (AP)
One of his old lacrosse coaches, Bob Shroeder, described him as "a good kid who did everything that good kids do." "He tried to please," Shroeder told the newspaper. "He was just a great kid." (AP)
26. Julia Pryde, Middletown, N.J.
Pryde, a graduate student from Middletown, N.J.
An "exceptional student academically and personally," said Saied Mostaghimi, chairman of the biological systems and engineering department where Pryde was seeking her master's degree. "She was the nicest person you ever met," Mostaghimi told The Star-Ledger of Newark. (AP)
Last summer, Pryde had traveled to Ecuador to research water quality issues with a professor. She planned to return this summer for follow-up work, Mostaghimi said. (AP)
A 2001 graduate of Middletown North High School, Pryde was on the school's swim team and played softball in two town leagues. (AP)
Her hometown has been touched by tragedy before, losing 37 current and former residents in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. (AP)
"The town pulls together in these situations. Everything that we can do for this family, we'll see what can be done," Middletown Mayor Gerard P. Scharfenberger said. (AP)
27. Mary Karen Read, 19, Annandale, Va.
Born in South Korea into an Air Force family and lived in Texas and California before settling in the northern Virginia suburb of Annandale.
Read, 19, considered a handful of colleges, including nearby George Mason University, before choosing Virginia Tech. It was a popular destination among her Annandale High School classmates, according to her aunt Karen Kuppinger. (AP)
She had yet to declare a major. "I think she wanted to try to spread her wings," said Kuppinger, of Rochester, N.Y. (AP)
Kuppinger said her niece had struggled adjusting to Tech's sprawling 2,600-acre campus. But she had recently begun making friends and looking into a sorority. Kuppinger said the family started calling Read as news reports surfaced. (AP)
"After three or four hours passed and she hadn't picked up her cell phone or answered her e-mail ... we did get concerned," Kuppinger said. "We honestly thought she would pop up." (AP)
28. Reema Samaha, 18, Centreville, Va.
Samaha graduated from Westfield High in 2006 -- three years after Cho. Authorities haven't said whether Cho knew the two young women and singled them out. (AP)
She was a freshman at the high school when Cho was a senior.
29. Waleed Shaalan
30. Leslie Sherman Sophomore, History and International Studies
31. Maxine Turner, 22, Vienna, Va.
Senior, Chemical Engineering
Mary was born in South Korea, Kuppinger said, and spent the last few years of her life in Annandale, Va. (Star-Gazette.com)
Mary's father, Peter Read, grew up in Palmyra, Wayne County, and joined the Air Force.
32. Nicole Regina White, 20, Carrollton, Va.
Junior studying International Studies and German
SOME OF THE INJURED
Thirteen people remain hospitalized after Monday's mass shooting at Virginia Tech. Virginia Governor Tim Kaine visited with eight students today at the Montgomery Regional Hospital today, saying that the students are doing "generally well." (AP)
Virginia Governor Tim Kaine visited with eight students today at the Montgomery Regional Hospital today, saying that the students are doing "generally well." (AP)
Guillermo Colman, student
Heidi Miller, student
Kristina Heeger, student
Senior who was shot twice in the right thigh and suffered pierced artery; he was in the same classroom as O'Dell (below)
Sterne, an Eagle Scout, used an electrical cord to fashion a tourniquet to stem the bleeding until help arrived. (New York Times: "Inside Room 207, Students Panicked at Rampage, and Then Held Off Gunman's Return").
Derek O' Dell, student
Biology student, 20, was shot in the arm while in a classroom.
After shooter left room, he soon returned but O'Dell and teacher prevented him from getting back in the room by pressing against the door