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The alert that two students had been shot on campus blipped into Jong Nam Lee's e-mail inbox around 9:30 that fateful Monday morning, April 16, as the Virginia Tech research scientist was writing a paper. Months earlier, a gunman had been loose on campus, and within the past two weeks, there had been two bomb threats.

Still, the warning prompted the soft-spoken engineer, who serves as an adviser to Virginia Tech's Korea Campus Crusade for Christ (KCCC), to check on his son, a student at the university. Josh Lee was safe. His morning class had been canceled.

But within minutes, Lee's wife, Mi Oak, shared the unimaginable news with her husband. A suicidal gunman had killed 32 and injured 28 on campus before putting a gun to his own head. Quickly, Lee and dozens of other campus ministry leaders and their student leaders pulled out all the stops to respond. Ninety miles away in Lynchburg, David Chung, pastor of Blacksburg's Korean Baptist Church and a professor in Liberty University's Korean-language seminary, heard the news while on class break. Immediately, he canceled class, packed a bag, and made a beeline for Blacksburg. Korea Campus Crusade is based at Korean Baptist Church, a Korean-language congregation. Worship is held Sunday afternoons at the 155-year-old Blacksburg Baptist Church, across the street from the sprawling Virginia Tech campus.

Nearly every congregation and on-campus ministry was hit in some way. "Cru"—as Campus Crusade for Christ is known at Virginia Tech—had four student fatalities. Baptist Collegiate Ministries lost one student. New Life Christian Fellowship, a student-oriented startup church, had two fatalities and ten student attenders injured. One graduate student affiliated with Korean Baptist ...

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In the Magazine

June 2007

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