Statement for the vigil for the victims of the UNC Charlotte shootings

Posted on May 02, 2019

A Statement from Chancellor Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr. 

To be read at the vigil for the victims of the UNC Charlotte shootings

On behalf of myself, my wife Jacquie, and the entire UNC Greensboro community, we join you this evening to mourn with our neighbors at UNC Charlotte.  

We grieve for those who lost their lives and for their families:

  • Ellis Parlier of Midland, NC; and
  • Riley C. Howell of Waynesville, NC

And we ache for those whose lives have been forever transformed by this senseless act.

This devastation hits so close to home.  Many here at UNCG, including myself, have friends, family, and loved ones who attend UNC Charlotte, or work there, or are part of that community and that city.  

Tonight we stand together with you as well.  I know you will be providing them with the strength they need, while also coping with your own fear and sadness.

When violence comes to a college campus so much like ours, it affects us in a profound way.  A college campus is a beautiful place — a place of learning, friendship, and optimism. A college campus should be peaceful and joyous and safe.  When this ideal is shattered — as it has been far too many times in the recent past — it shakes us to our core.

So, we gather together again.  We grieve together, again. And we are united, again, to show our resolve and stand up for the values we hold dear.  Especially on a college campus, this must be a moment to reflect and ask what we can do to create the change our world needs now.  

If change is to happen, it must start with communities like ours, with people like us, at moments like this.

We join you now in this moment of thought and reflection as we remember those who were lost, those who were injured, and all in “Niner Nation” who were impacted by this horrible event.