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University of Idaho holds candlelight vigil to remember victims

University of Idaho Vigil
Richard Rodriguez
/
Boise State Public Radio

Hundreds of students and alumni gathered at the University of Idaho on Wednesday for a candlelight vigil honoring the memory of four students who were killed.

The Kibbie Dome, home to the Vandals, was filled with students, alums, and the Vandal community. They stood in wait for the event to begin.

The lights dimmed, there was a moment of silence, then the singing of an orchestra broke the silence. Dean of Students Blaine Eckles stood before the crowd and thanked everyone for attending the vigil.

"What you are feeling is real," he says. "The sadness, the confusion, the worry, and the anxiety. It's okay to have those feelings. I have them too."

He continues and says that the Vandal family is here today and that by being together, we can heal.

"I hope and pray that each of us can find the strength to respond with positive action by caring for one another more deeply and encouraging each other more often and by pursuing our goals and building community along the way," said University of Idaho President Scott Green.

Stacy Chapin spoke to the crowd about her son, Ethan, and her voice began to crack, and she tried to shake it off.

"We are eternally grateful that we spent so much time with him," she said. "I want to remind you that the most important message we have for you and your families is to make sure that you spend as much time as possible with those people because time is precious, and it's something you can't get back."

University of Idaho Vigil - Ethan Chapin
Richard Rodriguez
/
Boise State Public Radio

Steve Goncalves speaks about the bond between a father and a daughter and reminisces about the times when the two best friends who shared everything left together.

"The beauty of the two always being together is something that will comfort us," he said. "It lets us know that they were with their best friends in the whole world."

University of Idaho Vigil Kaylee Goncalves
Richard Rodriguez
/
Boise State Public Radio

Ben Mogen's voice enthusiastically raises when talking about his daughter Madison, then quickly drops in volume.

University of Idaho Vigil - Madison Mogen
Richard Rodriguez
/
Boise State Public Radio

"All the love and support that everyone out there is shown through," he saids. "This has just been amazing."

Xana Kernodle's family was not in attendance for the vigil. Eckles shared some quick words about what she accomplished at the university.

University of Idaho Vigil - Xana Kernodle
Richard Rodriguez
/
Boise State Public Radio

Eckles calls for a moment of silence. The chime of a bell signals for a yellow light as it appears on the dome's wall — four lights lit.

"This has been a hard and heavy night, but it's filled with light and love," said Eckles. "Continue to support and shine the light for one another."

Other vigils were held at University of Idaho satellite campuses, including the one in Boise.

If you have any information, contact the Moscow Police Department by calling the tipline at 208-883-7180 or sending an email to tipline@ci.moscow.id.us. You can send any digital media to fbi.gov/moscowidaho.

I'm Richard and I'm a summer newsroom intern. Currently, I am doing stories on a variety of subjects to get a better understanding of different beats. However, I would love to cover stories about diverse issues.