Some of them stood, some of them sat, some of them frantically called parents on their phones, some were in groups and others were alone but no eye was dry as the sounds of unparalleled grief and loss reverberated through the Nursing Building.
Selflessly rising in the morning before many of us would dare be awake, they set out. They were going to do what few would do, and what few could do. They worked hard gaining admission into one of the most rigorous majors not only at Georgia Southern, but also in the entire world.
But who could have imagined that today as five nursing students traveled to their last clinical, that it would be their last trip–that on the way to help save the lives of others, they would lose theirs?
Grief could first be seen on the faces of GSU’s administration as they worked tirelessly to come to terms with delivering a message which no one is prepared to hear. Then, professors consoled students, sorority sisters of the fallen girls clung together and friends helped each other through incredible loss, a pain that I pray few will ever experience. The university is consumed with unmatchable grief, for unmatchable young women.
Today, I spent my afternoon in the Nursing Building. I saw many heartbroken eagles. But, I also saw the resilience of our student body. I watched as the entire School of Nursing used the skills of care and nurturing that will one day help them aid patients, to care for each other. The same selfless nature that their friends and students had was exhibited through them. A true testament to the fact that though Emily Clark, Morgan Bass, Abbie Deloach, Catherine Pittman and Caitlyn Baggett are no longer with us, they live on.
And as we join together as a family to mourn and to celebrate the lives of these bright women, I encourage those closest to this tragedy to continue to support each other and to not be afraid to seek counseling services if need be.