16,000 people attend VT's 3.2 for 32 run

16,000 people attend the 3.2 mile run at Virginia Tech to honor the 32 lives lost 10 years ago (Photo: Annie Andersen)

BLACKSBURG, Va. (WSET) -- No gun shots or loud noises start off Virginia Tech's 3.2 for 32 Remembrance Run. Instead an arch of 32 white balloons goes up, honoring those lost April 16.

Janet Rinehart works at Virginia Tech, and was there 10 years ago and calls that day "a moment you'll never forget."

Rinehart says that's what brings her out to the run every year, "that is the reason we're here. We'll always remember and never forget."

But out of that sadness came a strength. "Directly after. It's kind of how you would assume. Just kind of solemn and just kind of rest of the, what we had left for the year. But I think afterwards, primarily once football got going, it just brought a sense of community in everybody and I mean, that's part of the reason I'm down here now," explained Randy Jarrett from the Class of 2009.

Rinehart agreed, saying "We have a son that's a senior here and I'm convinced he stayed and went to tech because of the sense of community."

One of the 16,000 people who attended the run remembers when she brought her dogs to the Drillfield immediately after the shooting to comfort students. "People are willing to talk to, and love and show emotions to an animal when they wouldn't to a person. And it just really helped to have Cinnamon and Lucy here after the shooting," said Blacksburg resident Nina Templeton.

Templeton brought Lyle to walk with her. He is the descendant of Cinnamon and Lucy.

Those small gestures exemplify Virginia Tech's motto ut prosim and true Hokie spirit. Jarrett proudly said, "It doesn't get any better. Nothing compares to the spirit that you kind of get around here and the pride that people have."

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