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Andre Sasser, Location: Off Campus

Four days before the shooting happened, I decided to come home just to come home since I hadn’t done so last semester and only went home on holidays. Although I had a bunch of assignments coming along with me, it was nice to just get a break from being on campus.

That Monday, 2/13, I was wrapping up a coding project that I waited until the last minute to do and it was getting on my nerves. Once I had finished it, I checked my Snapchat like I normally do every 15 minutes to see that I had got a text from the gc that I was in with my roommates and our friends. I was shocked and confused when I heard that there was a shooting in one of the most well known places on campus, with people running out and crying. It was something that I would’ve never expect to hear, especially because it sounded so unheard of in that moment.

My roommate was the closest one by it since he was at Raising Canes, so pretty much I was getting information from him. I go on YikYak (which is a social media app where people can post anonymously) and see that people were also talking about the shooting. Then the emails start flooding in, information from MSU started blowing up my phone and that’s when it hit me that there’s really a shooter on campus. I immediately tell my mom and dad who were also shocked to hear the news. We waited for the news to come on so we could get accurate and clear information on what’s going on since people on twitter and snap were all freaking out and not giving out inaccurate info.

I’m a big Twitter user, but I knew not to check there for any information involving this incident. A ton of inaccurate information was hitting the scene and it was just a nightmare to see this unravel from home. However, I was glad to be at home because I’m not sure how I or my family would’ve reacted if I was up there. Til this day we make up scenarios of what would we would’ve did, but at the same time, they thank god that I was home during all of this.

The news comes on and they say that 1 student is already dead and that several are injured in the beginning. I had to see shots of my campus in ways I never thought I would see them, caution tapes, ambulances all over, police men, people screaming and running out crying. This was just terrible to watch unravel on TV. At this time, I was getting info from my RAs to lockdown and do not leave your dorm.

In the midst of all this, I could not believe what was happening in front of my eyes. The campus that I was just on 4 days ago was now getting shot up by someone who didn’t even go there. As much as I wanted to turn it off, I couldn’t. My eyes were glued to the TV as I was lecturing my mom where things were on campus. Then they say he’s at IM East and I was scared because I live in Akers, and knew that IM East was right there by the dorms. I was scared for my roommates because I didn’t want the shooter to go in there and hurt anyone. Updates from social media were flooding my phone, people from yikyak freaking out, people on snap freaking out as well, along with people who didn’t go there sending prayers.

Midnight is when everything started to slow down, the killer had died around that time I think and all I could think about was what just happened. 3 students just lost their lives and 5 were in the hospital is all the news kept repeating. I was just in shock that I was not there and that a shooting at the school i currently attended had just happened.

I had stayed up since I could not go to sleep with that on my mind, even tho I did in the end. YikYak was the most active that it had ever been, with people staying up all night, not knowing what to feel, what to do, what to say, everyone was just in shock, on or off campus. Around that time people were getting rides home and leaving immediately. My roommates had left by that morning and once I looked at my Snap map, almost everyone was off the campus.

With this tragic incident happening, MSU will not be the same. What was thought of as a safe and warm campus to several, is now seen as a campus that’s not so safe and somewhat frightening. They told us “Welcome home” when we first moved in but this does not feel like home anymore. This will be something unfortunately that people use for school projects, statistics, etc etc.. Even with campus being the safest that it will ever be right now, it does not feel like it because the harsh truth is that it could happen again, and this time it could be by a student, who has access to more stuff on campus.

I hate that this happened. I’m super grateful and I thank god that I wasn’t there because I knew my family would freak out. I live 2 hours away from MSU and I know that telling my family that their only child was in danger of getting shot would send them into a frenzy. It makes me appreciate them more than I do as well, because I could’ve been one of those victims, it could’ve been any of us who survived this tragedy. Moving on is the default thing to do, but this day will never be forgotten.

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