School shootings/massacres are nothing new and they predate the signing of the US Constitution. It should also be noted that guns weren’t always used in school massacres.
A couple of months ago I watched a video (embedded several paragraphs below) of a speech (June, 2014) given by Barack Obama regarding school massacres. Listening to the speech made me think of a conversation that I once had with the mother of school shooting victim.
Before we discuss that conversation please allow to me provide some background on school massacres.
One example from colonial America occurred in the Province of Pennsylvania (or Pennsylvania Colony) on July 26th 1764. Guns weren’t used and the perpetrators weren’t European descendants.
Four (4) Lenape indigenous Americans (also known as Delaware Indians) entered a schoolhouse in what is now Franklin County, near present Greencastle.
The schoolmaster, Enoch Brown, and a number of young students were tomahawked to death and scalped. Some students were taken as prisoners.
On August 16th 1856 in Florence, Alabama a schoolmaster strangled a young student to death because the boy had accidentally stepped on, and killed, the schoolmaster’s bird (a tame sparrow). When the boy’s father discovered what had happened he grabbed his gun and went and to the school and shot the schoolmaster dead.
On November 2nd 1853 in Louisville, Kentucky a schoolmaster (Mr. Butler) was shot dead by a student named Matthew Ward. The day before the shooting Mathew’s brother, also a student, was punished by the schoolmaster. Mathew believed that the punishment was excessive. Mathew brought a pistol to school the next morning and shot Mr. Butler (the schoolmaster) dead. Mathew was acquitted of the crime.
There are many other examples and many of them have occurred outside of the United States. Before anyone had ever heard of the town (population approximately 25,000) of Columbine, Colorado (and the 1999 Columbine High School massacre) there was, for example, the Dunblane school massacre which occurred March 13th 1996 in Scotland.
Thomas Hamilton shot dead sixteen (16) children and one (1) teacher at Dunblane Primary School. Ten (10) others were wounded during the attack. Hamilton then killed himself.
Obama outright lied when he said that, We are the only developed country on Earth where this [i.e., school massacres] happens. He said that during his speech (referenced in the foregoing) in regards to the June 10th 2014 shooting at Reynolds High School in Troutdale, Oregon where a 15 year old Michael Padgett (he was Mormon) shot dead a 14 year old student named Emilio Hoffman. A teacher was also wounded during the attack and a security, or law enforcement, officer exchanged gun fire with Padgett. Padgette then shot himself and died.
I once worked as a technical support agent for one of the world’s largest manufactures of computer hard drives, Western Digital. During many of the calls I was able to identify the issue as a problem with drive format.
I would talk the customer through steps on how to format their hard drive for use with PC or with Mac. Sometimes for use on both.
If you want to use your drive (any drive, by any manufacturer) on both you’d go to Disk Utility (if doing so on a Mac) and then choose one partition, then MS-DOS FAT and in options select Master Boot Record. You can do the same on PC using EX-FAT.
Sometimes the steps and options are little different if the hard drive is more than 2 tb (and sometimes a 2tb harddrive wont even show up on some computers even if the drive is formatted correctly). Sometimes you’ll use GUID rather than Master Boot Record and sometimes you’ll use FAT32.
[NOTE: Western Digital does not recommend, or support, multiple hard drive partitions because, according to Western Digital, the drive becomes less stable and corruption is more likely to occur.]
Some readers here at the WOBIK blog may believe that most people already knows that stuff. However, that’s simply not that case and as I’ve pointed out in the foregoing most of the calls which I received were identified, after listening to the customer, as format problems. Sometimes this also included initializing the disk and also switching the disk from offline to online. Sometimes a customer would ask about data recovery and I would direct them to search Google for free data recovery software (although I wasn’t permitted to recommend any specific software by name) .
In any event, those are the types of problems which prompted Sonya Rodolfo-Sioson to call me at Western Digital technical support.
At some point during the call she mentioned that she used to live in Iowa.
I informed her that I, myself was from Iowa. She then indicated that her daughter was a student at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. I told her that my brother was also a student at the very same university.
Sonya told me that her daughter, Miya Rodolfo-Sioson, was left paralyzed after the 1991 shooting at the University of Iowa.
On November 1st 1991 a Chinese student named Gang Lu (pictured below) at the University of Iowa in Iowa City (the old capital of Iowa) opened up fire using a .38 caliber revolver and killed five people and seriously injured another student named Miya Rodolfo-Sioson.
Gang Lu was born in Beijing (or Peking), China and was a graduate student in physics at the University of Iowa. He received his doctoral degree in May, 1991
Lu was competing for an academic award (which included a $1,000 prize) called the D.C. Spriestersbach Dissertation Prize. He believed that his dissertation was going to win the prize. His dissertation was titled, Study of the “Critical Ionization Velocity” Effect by Particle-in-Cell Simulation.
He didn’t win. A physics student named Linhua Shan won the award and the prize money. I’m not sure if it was $1,000 or $2,500. I know that in 2014 it is $2,500 but back in 1991 it may have been $1,000. It was probably $2,500 even in 1991 but I’ve seen both numbers cited in written accounts of the shooting. Readers are welcome to investigate.
On November 1st 1991 Gang Lu walked into the University of Iowa campus and shot dead the following individuals (including the student who won the award):
Gang Lu then murdered the Vice President for Academic Affairs who had denied his appeal for the D.C. Spriestersbach Dissertation Prize.
The Vice President for Academic Affairs was a woman named T. Anne Cleary.
She was a white American but, incredibly, she too was born in China (just as Gang Lu was). T. Anne Cleary was born in Shanghi, China and was the daughter of a missionary father. At the University she was well known for her love of helping students from China.
Gany Lu shot her in the head with his .38 caliber revolver. She died the following day:
Before shooting T. Anne Cleary he (Gang Lu) spoke with a student named Miya Rodolfo-Sioson who was working as a temp assistant for T. Anne Cleary.
After Gang Lu shot T. Anne Cleary in the face he then turned around and fired on Miya.
Miya was shot in the mouth and spinal cord. Minutes later Gang Lu shot himself and died.
Miya was paralyzed and became a quadriplegic:
Miya Rodolfo-Sioson was born in the Philippines in 1968 and raised in Ames, Iowa.
Following the death of their father, Miya and her three older brothers were raised in a single-parent home by their mother, Sonya.
Miya Rodolfo-Sioson was an incredible woman. In May of 2007, Miya was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer. After 18 months of battling the disease, Miya passed away on December 3rd 2008.
She was an extraordinary individual and there’s really and truly no way that I could record here all of the remarkable and exceptional aspects of Miya, her life and accomplishments.
If you’d like to learn more about Miya Rodolfo-Sioson please visit her website:
Miya continued with her education after the shooting and even learned to use computers with here mouth.
Below is a video which features Miya, and others with similar conditions, who have learned to use computers. After watching the video below I can no longer respect or honor claims put forth by John McCain to effect that his war injuries keep him from using computers:
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