Tyler Man, Involved In UT Austin Tower Massacre, Reflects On Experience - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

4/17/07-Tyler

Tyler Man, Involved In UT Austin Tower Massacre, Reflects On Experience

Until Monday, the nation's worst mass shooting on a college campus was 40 years old.  In 1966, a student at UT Austin killed 16 people from the campus tower.   For one Tyler man, it's an experience he's lived with his entire life, and it left a lingering question the students at Virginia Tech are now faced with.  

"No matter how many years go by, I remember that day," said John Trube who was a student at UT Austin during the tower massacre. "I remember that incident. I remember the people I saw, and the question is why." It was just a matter of minutes between the time John Trube of Tyler left the tower at UT Austin 40 years ago, and the gunman, Charles Whitman went up.

"Whitman could very well have been going up those elevators as I was coming down the other one," said Trube. "It was that close.  The only reason I left when I did was because I had to go to class that morning."   Sounds and sights from yesterdays shootings remind John of the gunshots he heard that day and the dead bodies he saw just feet away from him.

"It makes you wonder," said Trube. "It gives I guess to some degree, some purpose to you in a way that ok if I was spared for whatever reason, I don't know what that reason is, so I guess the thing you try to do is make your life as good as you can." It's advice John says he would give to all the students at Virginia Tech, especially those close to the tragedy.

"You can't dwell on it," said Trube. "You've got to deal with that issue as to why you are still alive, and think it through and realize there is some purpose for you, and there truly is. There's got to be. There's no other way to it. You were spared for some reason."   The University of Texas in Austin announced today it will darken its tower beginning Tuesday night through Thursday in memory of those lost.

Molly Reuter, reporting. mreuter@kltv.com

 

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