Three years after the Oct. 1, 2015 UCC shooting when eight students and one instructor were killed, students and staff, families of those who died and friends collected on campus to honor those who lost their lives Fall term of 2015.
“I can remember it like it was yesterday,” said a guest at the memorial who wished to remain anonymous. “It is a day that will live with me for the rest of my life.” The guest was still in high school during 2015, and the shooting delayed her UCC enrollment.
“I thought it was safer to work full time and save up for a better car,” the guest explained.
Around 200 people attended the remembrance at the compass courtyard in the center of campus. The ceremony started with bagpipes played by David Parkhurst and Carol Caturegli of the Eugene Highlands according to Dan Bain of the News Review. By the end of “Saving Grace” the majority of the crowd was in tears.
The death on campus of eight students and an instructor made returning to campus difficult for many. Some students never returned while others struggled through coming back to campus. A student named Sierra who was present Oct. 1, 2015 while the school was locked down said, “I will never be ok with what happened, but out of my respect and love of my fellow students 1 returned and pushed myself harder than I had before so that I can be part of the solution not part of the problem.”
Sierra now works on her degree as a case worker and is planning to work for DHS in January. “Fall term of 2015 my major was undecided and I had no clue what I wanted to do as a career, now I have a real future. I have to accredit my career change to this tragedy.” Sierra said what helped her along the way was support from her family and the ability to receive some counseling services.
If anyone is having difficulties coping with this or any other campus related issues, UCC now has a new life coach on campus. Her name is Anita Louise, her email is: firstname.lastname@example.org. Her office is located next to the cafeteria.