By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
WASHINGTON (Worthy News) – The U.S. Michigan State University was holding a vigil Wednesday after identifying the three students who were killed in a shooting on the campus, amid mounting concerns about such incidents in the nation.
Those killed in the late Monday attack were named Alexandria Verner, a junior from Clawson; Arielle Anderson, a sophomore from the Detroit suburb of Grosse Pointe; and Brian Fraser, a sophomore also from Grosse Point.
The victims were shot and killed when Anthony McRae, a 43-year-old man with no affiliation to the university in East Lansing city, opened fire inside an academic hall and student union building shortly after 8:00 p.m., officials said.
His motive wasn’t immediately apparent, but investigators explained that the gunman had a history of mental health problems. He later died of self-inflicted gunshot wounds, police said. Responding officers recalled initially finding several shooting victims, including two who died, at the academic hall.
Shots were then fired moments later at the ‘MSU Union’ building, a gathering place for students that has a food court and convenience stores. A third student also passed away.
Michigan State University said it is holding a vigil on Wednesday evening at the rock, a fixture on its campus in East Lansing painted black with red lettering: “How many more?”
Concerns remained about five other victims who were reportedly critically wounded and are being treated at Sparrow Hospital.
U.S. President Joe Biden noted that the shooting came a day before the fifth anniversary of Parkland’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. “Five years the day that 14 students and three educators lost their lives in Parkland, Florida. I met all of the families,” he recalled.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis called for “a moment of silence at 10:17 am,” remembering the 17 lives lost in the school shooting.
Back in Michigan, survivors joined in mourning those killed in Monday’s Nass shooting. Clawson Public Schools superintendent Billy Shellenbarger paid tribute to Verner in an email to parents, saying: “Alex was and is incredibly loved by everyone. She was a tremendous student, athlete, leader and exemplified kindness every day of her life.”
He explained that “Her parents, Ted and Nancy, and sister Charlotte and brother TJ are equally grieving but are certainly already feeling the uplifting support of this tremendous community. If you knew her, you loved her, and we will forever remember the lasting impact she has had on all of us,” the superintendent wrote in a letter to families.
Verner had also attended Schalm Elementary School and Clawson Middle School. Arriving from Clawson, Michigan, she was studying biology and anthropology. She graduated from Clawson High School in 2020, where she starred on the volleyball and basketball teams.
Fraser, 20, was a sophomore business student who graduated from Grosse Pointe South Public School. He was chapter president of the university’s Phi Delta Theta fraternity group.
In a tribute, the group called “Brian a great friend to his Phi Delt brothers, the Greek community at Michigan State, and those he interacted with on campus. Phi Delta Theta sends its deepest condolences to the Fraser family, the Michigan Beta Chapter, and all those who loved Brian as they mourn their loss.”
His sister Micaela Fraser told the media the family was still in shock and that they didn’t want his name to be forgotten. Anderson, 19, a graduate of Grosse Pointe North High School, was devoted to family and hoped to become a pediatrician, relatives said.
Shootings have rocked the United States in several universities and schools, and the latest gun violence underscored an ongoing debate about the many weapons in the country. Biden said Monday’s attack made clear “there is a lot more work to do on gun legislation.“ He added that a shooting “is a family’s worst nightmare, and it happens far too often in this country.”
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