For example, during construction of a new medical education building at VCU in 1994, workers made a gruesome discovery: multiple skeletal remains dumped in an abandoned well before the Civil War — evidence of how the Medical College of Virginia was built, quite literally, on the bodies of Black Americans. Or consider the tragic fate of Bruce Tucker, a Black factory worker rushed to the state hospital in 1968 with severe head injuries but otherwise conscious and strong of heart. White surgeons — driven to perform the first heart transplant in Virginia’s history — removed life support and took Tucker’s heart to save a White man’s life. VCU has yet to publicly apologize to the Tucker family, much less offer financial compensation for their loss. Some things never change. But with a new generation of leaders at VCU, and the General Assembly’s help, I hope a change is going to come.
Chip Jones, Henrico, Va.