Tag Archives: memorial


We offer sympathies to those who’ve lost someone.

We have to stay strong in the wake of this tragedy,

This one, singular, unpreventable event.

We lower the flag for a day, then return to our lives.

Everything will be fine.

It keeps on happening though, doesn’t it?

More and more often.

And again and again,

We offer sympathies to those who’ve lost someone.

We have to stay strong in the wake of this tragedy,

This latest, recurring, preventable event.

And nothing changes.

And the victims shout for change

For help

To just be heard

Over the finger pointing and the blame

Over the lies and the insults

Over the constant redirection of our attention.

11 dead in Pittsburgh.

That makes 294 shootings in 2018.

2017 had 346.

And what have we done about it?

We offer sympathies to those who’ve lost someone.

We have to stay strong in the wake of this tragedy,

This far from the last, cyclical, starting to be expected event.

We pledge to never forget,

But when do we remember?

Because no matter what pretty words we say,

We always fail to enact any real change.

And there are so many things we could be doing.

We don’t, but we could.

No more sympathies.

No more sorries.

They do nothing, change nothing, and are nothing.

It’s time to remember the dead,

And it’s time to do justice to their memories.

It’s time to stop those numbers.

Time for these people to be more than statistics to be ignored.

There are too many who have been lost already.

A year after his death students celebrate the life of Sam Mason

In the wake of the recent developments in the ongoing case dealing with the death of Sam Mason, many students take time to remember his life.

Sam Mason, a 20-year-old Radford University sophomore and Tau Kappa Epsilon pledge, was found dead on Oct. 15, 2010 in a house off campus. Mason died of ethanol poisoning after attending a TKE party off campus the previous night.

School photo of Sam Mason from Facebook.

Two events were held to remember Mason as the first anniversary of his death approached. On Oct. 10-12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Panhellenic Council teamed up with the Interraternity Council to sponsor an event where students could tie-dye T-shirts in memory of Sam Mason. On Oct. 13, students held a candlelight vigil in remembrance.

These two events were also held in 2010 shortly after Mason’s death. Last year, friends of Mason set up a table for students to tie-dye T-shirts in remembrance of their friend because he really loved tie-dye, The Grateful Dead and retro-themed things. This year the Greek community took it upon themselves to host a tie-dying table.

“It is our duty as a Greek community to honor him,” said Panhellenic Executive Council President Brandi Steele.

Steele has faith that the event will continue each year.

Sam Mason. Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Steele said that to Mason’s friends, tie-dye is a perfect representation of him. The event was very successful and the table, which was located outside of the Bonnie Hurlburt Student Center, was always full. The event gave students a way to show support and to remember Mason. It made students feel bonded to each other.

“If I see a tie-dye shirt today, I feel bonded to everyone else knowing that we are representing a common cause,” Steele said.

At the candlelight vigil there were many people wearing tie-dye T-shirts. Several close friends of Mason spoke briefly about who Mason was and how life has been without him.

“It seems crazy to me that a year has gone by [since Mason’s death],” said Scott Thompson, a Radford University student and friend of Mason.

Thompson ended his speech by directing his attention to the audience and told them to cherish what they have and to be safe because life takes unexpected turns.

Derek Milliron, another friend of Mason, also spoke at the vigil about how he remembers Mason’s friendly nature. Milliron said Sam always had a “constant ability to light up every situation” and never had a bad or degrading thing to say about anyone. He ended by speaking to Mason and asking him to “keep on smiling.”

The recent developments in Mason’s case include indictments made on Sept. 20. Seven Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity members were indicted for hazing and supplying alcohol to an underage person in the case dealing with the death of Sam Mason. The seven men indicted were Dustin Lee Moore, Louis Hoskins Trible, Ryan N. Lawson, Christopher Michael Pizzi, Christopher Scott Cothren, Chadwick Evancho and William Taylor Blurke. There has not been any further developments in the case reported.