April 16, 2007 -- Parents, friends and families of Virginia Tech students have been flocking to online sites to check on students. The massively popular social networking sites like Myspace and Facebook became critical lifelines in the moments and hours after the shootings. Some students called ABC News to talk about what happened. The following comments were posted on Facebook.com.
Carlos 'Mohawk Monday' Fernandez (Washington, D.C.) wrote:Many of us are all worried about our friends, so lets do this. If you are okay! Please update your status in facebook to say something like "I'm okay"
Chris Banks (Virginia Tech) wrote:We need to get a facebook group started to keep this news story factual and not sensationalized. The bigger tragedy will be the impact this will have on the nation as a whole and the fact that the words Blacksburg and Virginia Tech will become synonymous with Death.Message - Report
Dhanik Modi (Virginia Tech) wrote:I too started getting messages from people from different countries wanting more and more info about the incident. Some even went to the extent of asking me to record my reaction over a video cam and send it to them. Disgusting!
Ed M (Virginia Tech) wrote:I wish I was still in Blacksburg to be with everyone.
Sara Pendleton Strickler (Virginia Commonwealth University) wrote:I wish I was still in Blacksburg to be with everyone too.
Mitchell Rainero (Kingsport, Tenn.) wrote:Let's not let the media destroy the image of Virginia Tech. Let's remember all the victims of this terrible crime here and everywhere. Those on campus update with reliable info.
Carlos 'Mohawk Monday' Fernandez (Washington, D.C.) wroteMany of us are all worried about our friends, so lets do this. If you are okay! Please update your status in facebook to say something like "i'm okay"That way all of us can see in the feed that you are okay. It is difficult to be out of Blacksburg and get information in. We all have dear friends that we want to hear from so make sure to pass this along to everyone you know.All you have to do is update your status and it will show in the feed and hopefully someone who may be in facebook and worried will see your update.Forward this to friends if you think it is a good idea!!
Julie Zurfluh (Virginia Tech) wrote: I stayed here after college and never thought the tragedies that happen all over the country could happen here.
Brendan Kennedy (Virginia Tech) wrote:My thoughts go out to everyone involved.
Chris Banks (Virginia Tech) wrote:If anybody has any info that hasn't made it to the media please post it here. We're any professors shot?
Al Chidester (Virginia Tech) wrote:We are all a part of the deadliest campus shooting in US history. My prayers go out to all.
Lauren Fernandez (Virginia Tech) wrote:My thoughts and prayers are with everyone that was affected and involved in todays shootings.
Philip Cathell (Virginia Tech) wroteMy condolences to all
Students called into ABC News Now and gave eyewitness accounts of the campus shootings at Virginia Tech. Below are transcripts of their calls.Josh Wargo, Egineering Student
We were sitting in class and all of a sudden heard loud banging noises -- thought it could be construction. Heard screaming through the walls and everyone started to panic. Heard shots down the hallways, everyone started panicking and jumping out the window.
We heard almost 40 or 50 shots. They were going on from the time we heard them and jumped out the window to almost two minutes later. Window was two or three stories. When I landed I was in a daze, standing outside of the building. Then I heard shots going through glass, that's when it hit me that I had to get out of there.
As soon as we heard the shots, people in class started calling 911, they were on the scene two minutes later.
I jumped out of the window and ran into Patten Hall, the neighboring building right across from it.
I was in a mechanics class, engineering class. They sounded like they were coming from the classroom next door. We could hear people screaming "Oh my god" from next door.
One of my friends called me to make sure that everyone is OK. I'm told that they're in stable condition, but some of them got shot. They told me my prof was shot in the face and didn't make it but we're not sure.
I got the e-mails, but my impression was it was prank or nothing serious -- hadn't heard anyone was apprehended or actual bombs were found.
We live in a pretty peaceful community. This is a total shock.
I feel a little bit numb, I've never been in a situation like this before.
Classmate broke his leg jumping out of window, he was able to crawl away from the building, I'm pretty sure he made it to the hospital.
No, I had no idea another shooting had taken place.
Gina Om, Engineering Student
She spoke to ABC News Now from a local hospital where she'd gone to check on an injured friend.
I was just really scared because Norris Hall is the building where I have all my classes, my department. It's kinda surreal because I've always thought Virginia Tech was extremely safe, one of the reasons that I considered to come to the school. It's hard to believe and sad that it happened at this school because it's a nice town.
I found out before some of my friends because I was in an engineering class so I was able to contact my mom but I'm getting calls and texts from people to see if I'm OK.
It's hard to believe that it was so close to my daily scheduled place I go every day.
I was on campus for the August 2006 incident. I was in my next class that day, we were told halfway through and told to go home. This one is a little more scary because it's so many kids that I know and are close to you.
What brought you to hospital?One of my friends had been shot three times who had been in the classroom.
He's stable, fine, talking, but there was another kid in the emergency room who had to jump out of window. He broke his leg.
I was in a classroom, which was closer to west AJ Hall, so we heard ambulances. They said OK, everyone go home. When I got home I started calling people, checking to see if everyone was OK. That's when I found out that one of my friends was shot.
I haven't seen any other victims. There's a lot of friends and family here. They won't let anyone into the emergency room. They have the waiting area, they're only letting one person in and out to see friends.
Michelle Billman, WUVT Campus Radio Station Student Radio General Manager
I was in class … ;two buildings over. Someone got a text message saying something was going on. After that we were told to stay in the building, away from the windows.
Right at the end of class, 9:50 or 9:55.
It really wasn't organized. Almost everyone else just left, and while the kids were running out, people said, "Come back, come back."
"The only reason we knew was because someone got a text message. … No one was there saying, "This is what's going on."
Communication from college?I checked my e-mail about 8:30. … I went to my class as I usually would. By 8:30 no one was notified that something had happened at 7. We went onto a dangerous campus not knowing …
It's so hard because I know that those police officers are putting their lives on the line and it's so chaotic. …There needs to be a better system …
Anna Woodford, Sophomore
I was thankfully still in my room. We got all the e-mails before I had to go to class, and most of my classmates were able to get back before the lockdown happened.
Our Internet, everything is obviously very clogged, Web mail is down, phone lines are mostly down, everybody is waiting.
Are you looking for friends?I've heard back from most of them, but I still have one or two who are missing.
It's an unbelievable situation. Everybody is shaken up. I don't think anyone's going to want to talk about it for a long time. I have gotten in touch with my family but getting in touch with my friends has been a lot more difficult.
Following the media as much as I can, like I said Internet is down, we can't log in.
Its impossible to describe. You hope and pray for the best. That's all we can do. My friends and I are praying that the people we haven't gotten in touch with are safe.