Purdue University Shooting Hits Close to Home

The peace of mind a parent wants to have while their children are in school — whether it’s elementary or away at college — is becoming a thing of the past.



On January 21, 2014 my own son’s university, Purdue, was the site of a senseless and tragic shooting. One student shot another in a classroom resulting in his death.

Why? We still don’t know, and this is perhaps is the most disturbing part of these atrocities being committed in schools across our country. What is so bad that the only recourse seems to be a gun and violence?

I am having a difficult time envisioning my son, a senior at Purdue University, walking calmly and safely from class to class; from his dorm to the cafeteria, or even to the small commercial area a short walk from campus.

My son wrote this on his Facebook status on the day of the shooting and after the candlelight vigil observed in honor of the victim:

Thank you everyone for your thoughts and prayers. It is strange to see how events such as these occur, even more so when it is a fellow Boilermaker. My thoughts are with the Boldt family and those closest to him. The vigil was a beautiful service and so many came to stand strong despite it being 2 degrees. I am proud to say that this family of Boilermakers is a tough and proud family. Boiler Up!

As details about this horrible crime emerge, I hope to find some peace of mind in spite of being 2,000 miles away from where this tragedy took place. For us, these events are too close for comfort; our boy lives only a few dorm-room doors down from where the victim resided in the same dorm building. He has seen police escorting the victim’s parents walk up and down the hallways and in and out of their deceased son’s dorm room — my heart breaks just envisioning this!

There’s little comfort in knowing this was a targeted act of violence — the fact that the shooter walked into a classroom armed, and stabbed and shot 4 or 5 bullets is just unfathomable to us.

As parents, all we can do to help lessen the times these horrible events take place is to talk with our kids. Let them know problems are like belly buttons, we all have them! Communication with them, especially while they’re away and perhaps alone and stressed out, is vital. Reassurances that all can be solved except death is what we tell our college-age kids. My husband lost his father at the tender age of 16, and that is the basis for our advise to them because death is final. Everything else can be and will be resolved at some point.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families affected by this horrible crime, and also to all those who have been touched by this.

Boiler Strong!

What do you tell your children about these terrible school shootings? What are your thoughts about guns and how easily people get them and use them on each other?



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