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Virginia football program is the latest victim of a deadly gun attack, and any answers are hard to come by

Virginia football program is the latest victim of a deadly gun attack, and any answers are hard to come by
Written by nismiste
Virginia football program is the latest victim of a deadly gun attack, and any answers are hard to come by


Hell came Sunday for college football, as it so often happens in many corners of American society.

On Saturday, the University of Virginia played Pittsburgh in a home game. On Sunday, some of the Cavalier players, along with non-athlete students, boarded a rental bus as part of a classroom field trip to watch a game in Washington, DC.

Everything broke out when the bus returned to campus late Sunday night.

A gunman. Gun attack on the bus! Three dead students, each a football player. Two more people, at least one of whom was a player, were injured. It’s a manhunt for the shooter, himself a former UVA player who hasn’t been on the show for at least a year.

And a sanctuary setup that shakes the pristine landscapes of this idyllic campus and shakes a sport to its core.

The questions are many. There are almost no answers. Pain simply cannot be calculated.

Three young lives are over. Three bright futures extinguished.

Virginia coach Tony Elliott called it “Destruction” in a statement. “Heartache.”

D’Sean Perry, a young defender from Miami, Lavel Davis, a stellar receiver from South Carolina, and Devin Chandler, a Virginia Beach native and wide receiver from Wisconsin, died, the two still on the bus.

University of Virginia police chief Tim Longo, right, speaks to the media, while University of Virginia President Jim Ryan listens, left, in Charlottesville on Monday, November 14, 2022. va. Authorities said three students, all of whom were football players, were killed by gunfire on Sunday night. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

According to The Advocate newspaper, one of the injured was listed in good condition as he ran back to Mike Hollins from Baton Rouge, La. Another student’s condition was listed as critical.

The alleged shooter was arrested without incident on Monday afternoon, 75 miles away near Richmond, Virginia, just days before his 21st birthday.

There will be time to understand what happened, how it happened, and why. The alleged gunman is charged with three murders.

“There will be questions without answers,” said UVA police chief Tim Longo. “We do not yet have a full understanding of the cause and circumstances surrounding this event.”

Maybe it’s not because this future isn’t the answer that changes everything, that brings back lives that were exhausted too soon. There is nothing that can really make sense of these actions. There never is.

What causes someone who has made it to UVA, one of the best and most famous universities in the country, to take such action against fellow students, to end their life as well as, for all intents and purposes, himself? ?

“[They were] “He was found in a rental bus that day, where they were enjoying a school event, had dinner together, and then drove back to our land,” Longo said. “And then one of them chose to commit an act of violence.”

When a school trip to an off-campus game is considered dangerous even to the biggest and strongest men around, then what is safe, where is safe, and how will this country find a way to end this plague of death and destruction?

Longo said the alleged shooter had encountered the university’s “threat assessment team” twice in recent years.

One time it was for a report of owning a firearm and another for participating in some form of harassment. Both inquiries went nowhere. A roommate said he had never seen a gun and that his lack of cooperation ended the harassment investigation. Longo said there was an additional “concealed weapons violation” that was never reported to campus officials outside of Charlottesville.

Now this. Now the three families head to a campus where they once left their son to play Major League football and get a world-class education. This is the kind of program where Sundays can be spent on educational enrichment, not just preparing for the next opponent.

Now the football team lacks some of its greatest personalities, the three boys hailed by both their schoolmates and professors for their academic curiosity and everyday cheerfulness. The games seem even more meaningless.

Virginia wide receiver Lavel Davis Jr. was among three players killed in a gunfight on campus Sunday night.  (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

Virginia wide receiver Lavel Davis Jr. was among three players killed in a gunfight on campus Sunday night. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

“These were incredible young men with great aspirations and extremely bright futures,” Elliott said. “Our hearts ache for their families, classmates, and friends… they touched us, inspired us, and worked incredibly hard as representatives of our program, university, and community.”

Elliott has spoken like many other authority figures over the years. Amidst these unimaginable circumstances constantly occurring, she was devastated and unsure of what to say. All anyone can do is hope it doesn’t happen to them. Coaches and players from all sports on Monday offered their thoughts and condolences. There is almost nothing else to be said.

“My heart is broken for the victims and their families” UVA president James Ryan said. “…This is an extraordinarily difficult day for our community.”

This time it was Virginia’s turn. This time to college football. This time, next time, until another wave of sadness and tragedy hits one and another.





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