ODU plans for permanent memorial Va. Beach shooting victims

Virginia Beach Mass Shooting

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Although it is in a different city, a permanent memorial for the victims of the Virginia Beach mass shooting is coming to the campus of Old Dominion University.

The memorial will be dedicated by the ODU Alumni Association this fall at homecoming according to Ellen Neufeldt, Vice President of Student Engagement and Enrollment Services at the university.

ODU President John R. Broderick said in a letter released the day after the shooting that five of the people killed had connections to the university.

  • Tara Welch Gallagher, BS in Civil Engineering 2002, Master of Engineering 2003
  • Alexander Gusev, BS in Business Administration, 2010
  • Richard H. Nettleton, BS in Business Administration, 1994
  • Christopher Kelly Rapp, BS in Civil Engineering, 1994, and son of a retired ODU administrator
  • Ryan Keith Cox, former student

The announcement was made at a vigil held Wednesday evening at ODU’s Webb University Center.

11 city of Virginia Beach employees and a contractor were killed in the May 31 shooting at a building on the city’s municipal center complex. Learn more about all 12 victims and the services that are being planned for them at this link.

A university spokesperson initially said that Ikea donated 1,500 candles for the vigil, however severe weather moved the event inside.

“It was done very well, very nice. If you could say you enjoy it, I enjoyed it,” said Terr Legg, who graduated from ODU. “Everyone is coming together to support Virginia Beach. We’re all one area here.”

Legg was close with Richard Nettleton, who died in the shooting.

“Rich has always been a very giving person. He’s always been very concerned with ethics and integrity, and has tried to pass that along to the graduating engineering students,” Legg said.

I extend my deepest sympathies to the families, friends and colleagues of all of the victims. I know this tragedy has triggered a range of conflicting emotions – pain, anger, confusion. But it has also brought out the best in the Monarch community, and I am heartened that many have stepped up to volunteer, including our ODU counselors participating in the Virginia Beach First Responders team to help those in need.

ODU President John R. Broderick
This combination of photos provided by the City of Virginia Beach on Saturday, June 1, 2019 shows victims of Friday’s shooting at a municipal building in Virginia Beach, Va. Top row from left are Laquita C. Brown, Ryan Keith Cox, Tara Welch Gallagher and Mary Louise Gayle. Middle row from left are Alexander Mikhail Gusev, Joshua O. Hardy, Michelle “Missy” Langer and Richard H. Nettleton. Bottom row from left are Katherine A. Nixon, Christopher Kelly Rapp, Herbert “Bert” Snelling and Robert “Bobby” Williams. (Courtesy City of Virginia Beach via AP)

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