(WVLT) - The students here at Virginia Tech are responsible for every aspect of the vigil Tuesday night. They planned it, they put it on, and their message to the world Tuesday is this: we are Virginia Tech, we will recover, and we will survive with your prayers.
One by one, each hand builds a luminary. Built with love and holding the memory of a student lost to violence.
"Sometimes you feel alone. When you find out things, you feel like you're the only one who's impacted by things," Jessica Palazzalo says.
Sorority sisters Jessica Palazzalo and Keri Rathje aren't alone. Thousands of their fellow students join them on the Drill Field. No one too young or too old, and nothing holding them back.
"It think it helps because it shows everyone standing together, knowing that everybody's going through this really helps," Keri Rathje says.
And help is everywhere as the flame is passed from one student to the next. Students shaken by the deadliest school shooting in US history now reaching to each other for support.
"I knew some people that had friends who died, and stuff. It's just...you never think it's going to happen here, you know," One student says.
Tonight, a school spirit is reborn and chants "Let's go Hokies!" A student body, now a family. Each flame, a member.
"The memory, the hope," Rathje says.
As the sun sets, the students already look towards the new day.