The news coming out of Blacksburg, VA yesterday was just horrifying and numbing. Many of us at SB Nation were debating whether or not to post something about the tragedy, if for no other reason than to acknowledge that there are much bigger, far more serious things going on in this world than sports. I decided not to say anything, because... what can you really say?
The shootings were just such a terrible tragedy and I guess I figured if people wanted (or needed) to use sports as an escape last night, that was at least something to offer. I can't say I'm entirely comfortable with that decision a day later, however. But many of my SB Nation colleagues felt differently, and I'm glad they followed their hearts on the matter.
I watched much of the television news coverage this morning and was paralyzed at seeing photos of several victims, each of whom looked far too young and hopeful to have their lives taken away, and hear testimonials from those who witnessed the carnage and were trying to cope with losing friends and family members. I can't even imagine what it must feel like to be a parent, relative, or friend of anyone who was senselessly killed.
A college campus should be a safe place, where someone feels free to grow, to find him or herself, to become part of a community, to learn. For so many of us, some of the best years of our lives were spent in such environments. It should never feel like a place where you'd fear for your safety. And it most certainly should not be defined by such a heartbreaking outbreak of violence.
The Detroit Tigers fan community has been affected by this tragedy, as one of its own was a victim of yesterday's shootings. Brian Bluhm, a frequent commentor on The Detroit Tigers Weblog and the Motown Sports forum was one of those who had their life taken far too early, with so much promise ahead. Those who lost a good friend and fellow fan have posted tributes today to Brian.
If I have missed any others, I sincerely apologize. My deepest sympathies to those who knew Brian, and condolences to his family, as well as everyone who has been affected by this tragedy. No one should have to go through something like this.