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University commemoration ceremony, candlelight vigil, part of 2017 Day of Remembrance events April 16

April 9, 2017

Virginia Tech Landmarks

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (D-Virginia) will provide remarks during Virginia Tech’s University Commemoration event to be held on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. at the April 16 Memorial on the Drillfield.

Kaine, who served as governor of Virginia in 2007, will be joined by Virginia Tech President Tim Sands at the event, which will include the reading of the names and brief biographies of each of the 32 lives that were lost 10 years ago.

The University Commemoration event, as well as the candlelight vigil which will be held at 7:30 p.m. at the April 16 Memorial on the Drillfield, will be streamed live from the university homepage.

On Sunday morning, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Sands, and President Emeritus Charles Steger will participate in the wreath laying ceremony at the April 16 Memorial a few minutes prior to 9:43 a.m. This ceremony will coincide with a statewide moment of silence.

 At the University Commemoration event, Scott Johnson, associate professor of human development, and Patty Raun, professor of performance and voice in the School of Performing Arts in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, will read brief biographies of the 32 victims.

Pat Finn, president of the Class of 2017 and a senior majoring in marketing management in the Pamplin College of Business, and Tara Reel, the 2016-17 graduate student representative on the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors and master’s degree student in both urban and regional planning and public administration in the School of Public and International Affairs, will also speak at the event.

Students and alumni will provide remarks at the student-led candlelight vigil at 7:30 p.m. Sunday. Thirty-two remembrance candles will be lit from the single flame of the ceremonial candle. Acapella singers will perform and the ceremony will conclude with Echo TAPS followed by 32 minutes of silence.

Students and alumni giving remarks include Alexa Parsley, current Student Government Association president and a senior majoring in political science in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences; Sumeet Bagai, a 2007 Virginia Tech alumnus and former student government president and head of Hokies United; Matt Chan, a graduate student in civil engineering in the College of Engineering and the chair of the Commission on Student Affairs; Sabrina Bachert, a senior majoring in international studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and president of the Virginia Tech Student Alumni Associates; and Bo Hart, a 2011 Virginia Tech alumnus who was SGA president and chair of the 4.16 Student Planning Committee. Members of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets will also participate.

The university will provide candles to those attending the evening vigil.

The April 16 Memorial will be temporarily closed to the public during some of the university events held throughout the weekend.

More information regarding the 3.2 Mile Run in Remembrance and community picnic to be held on Saturday can be found online.

Should inclement weather become a factor Friday through Sunday, updates and announcements will be posted to the university homepage and will be shared using university social media channels.

Parking, traffic interruptions April 14-16

Because many of the Day of Remembrance events will be held on or near the Drillfield, vehicular traffic will be limited on Drillfield Drive and Blacksburg Transit routes will be affected.

Starting Friday, at 5 p.m. the north side (Burruss Hall side) of Drillfield Drive will be closed to traffic and will reopen Monday morning. At 7 p.m. the north side of Drillfield Drive will be closed to Blacksburg Transit traffic until Monday morning, and at 7:30 p.m. all of Drillfield Drive (north and south sides) will be closed to all traffic and Blacksburg Transit until Monday morning.

Those attending events over the weekend are asked to park at the Perry Street parking deck or the Perry Street surface lots. The North End Center parking garage will be open to the public starting Friday at 6 p.m.

By 10 p.m. Friday, all cars must be removed from parking spaces on Drillfield Drive.

For more information on Day of Remembrance events, please visit the We Remember website.

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