Virginia Tech reflects on how community got them through the tragedy 12 years ago

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BLACKSBURG, Va. (WDBJ) — Tuesday marks the 12th anniversary of the shooting at Virginia Tech.

When the clock strikes midnight on April 16, the candle is lit at the Remembrance Memorial on Virginia Tech's campus.

"The day of remembrance that we celebrate every year really is a time for us to pause and reflect and remember the 32 precious lives that we lost 12 years ago," Mark Owczarski, Virginia Tech spokesperson, said.

Thirty-two lives are memorialized in stone, watching a campus continue to prevail after the tragedy.

"It's our responsibility to hold up those lives and to live out their dreams and aspirations and what we do on a day to day basis," Owczarski said.

They do so in their commitment to serve and support one one. And Remembrance Day serves as another reminder that it's community that got them through their darkest hour.

"Community was an important part of the healing that happened to our community 12 years ago when Hokies watched other Hokies."

There will be a moment of silence as a wreath is laid at the memorial at 9:43 a.m. Tuesday. Then at 11:59 p.m., the candle will be extinguished and returned to Burruss Hall.

Through April 18, there will also be two exhibitson display at the Newman Library for the Virginia Tech community and public to see.

In addition, Gov. Ralph Northam ordered the Virginia flag to be flown at half-staff in memory of the victims of the Virginia Tech shooting on Tuesday.

This is to order that the flag of the Commonwealth of Virginia is to be flown at half-staff on all local, state, and federal buildings and grounds in the Commonwealth of Virginia in respect and memory of the victims of the Virginia Tech shooting, their families, and the entire Virginia Tech community, a statement by Northam read.

I hereby order that the flag shall be lowered at sunrise on Tuesday, April 16, 2019, and remain at half-staff until sunset.

Ordered on this, the 15th day of April, 2019.