The Virginia Tech massacre

Rescue and Recovery

Kevin Sterne rescue
Kevin Sterne's story of resilience and recovery began with his rescue — a harrowing moment captured on camera by Alan Kim. A Roanoke Times editor had sent the Blacksburg-based photographer to campus after receiving reports of a shooting, Kim told News Photographer magazine. He set up a camera with a 500mm lens about 200 yards away from Norris Hall, where Sterne was shot. As four police officers struggled to carry the injured student to safety, Kim clicked away. His dramatic photo was seen around the world and anchored the front page of the next day's Roanoke Times. Kim, who no longer works as a news photographer, declined to discuss his iconic photo with The Post — only to say that he was certain Sterne was alive when he took it. In one of the only interviews he's ever given about his work that day, Kim told News Photographer that he didn't understand the severity of the situation at Virginia Tech until after he'd submitted his photos. "It wasn't until several hours later that the scope of the tragedy was revealed," he said.

Front page courtesy of The Roanoke Times. By Bill O'Leary, J. Freedom du Lac, Ben de la Cruz, Kat Downs, Pratik Shah, Jayne Orenstein and Jonathan Forsythe - The Washington Post.
Photos of Suzanne Grimes by Roberto Gonzalez for The Washington Post and Steve Helber - AP. Published April 15, 2012.

Full coverage

Story: A massacre’s survivors

In Blacksburg, students, loved ones and others affected by the tragedy faced their grief.


Profiles of the victims

Profiles of the victims

Remembering the victims who died at Virginia Polytechnic Institute.


Complete archive

Virginia Tech archvies

Full coverage of the shootings at Virginia Tech on April 16, 2007.