Garrett Evans

Garrett Evans

  • Age: 30
  • Class: Senior
  • Major: Economics and statistics
  • Hometown: Chicago
  • Blacksburg residence: North Main Street

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Something felt strange about the day, starting with the morning's April snow.

Garrett Evans awoke with a funny feeling, a strange vibe telling him "Don't go to class."

He went to his German lecture anyway. He doesn't believe in skipping.

But something felt different inside instructor Jamie Bishop's Norris Hall room. Evans noticed the smallest things, like a student who always wore her hair down was sporting a ponytail.

He felt something was going to happen. He just didn't know what.

Not long after class began, he heard a noise. Then, screaming.

"What is going on here?" Evans asked.

Soon enough, he learned.

A young Asian man in a ball cap and vest walked into the room fast, a gun in each hand.

"Bang."

"Bang."

"Bang."

Gunfire was the only sound in the room.

The shooter, later identified as 23-year-old student Cho Seung-Hui, shot a woman here, shot another woman there. He shot the young instructor, Bishop.

Meanwhile, Evans explained to WLS-TV 7 in Chicago, something told him to move before he, too, got shot in the head. He ducked, trying to creep between rows of desks.

As Evans fled, the shooter walked around the room firing -- until he ran out of rounds.

It only took a second for him to reload the gun and get back to work.

He said nothing as he shot students, one by one.

His face, Evans remembered, held only a look of fierce concentration.

He made no eye contact as he shot.

Evans saw a woman, hit in the face, fighting for breath. She passed out and came back. Evans does not know if she made it or not.

The guy two seats in front of Evans was bleeding and breathing heavily. He fell from his chair onto the floor. Evans assumed he was gone.

Evans was shot in the leg. Had he not "played dead," he is sure the shooter would have finished him off.

When he left the room after a few seconds of furor, Evans was one of just a few people not fatally hit.

As soon as the shooter was gone, a woman ran to the window, yelling for help. Two young men stood at the door, ready to hold it shut in case he came back.

One guy took off Evans' shirt, wrapping it around his bleeding leg.

"You're going to be all right," he told Evans.

Like a scene from a horror movie, the shooter returned. Two men at the door tried blocking the killer, who managed to open it a few inches.

Evans saw the shooter's face through the crack in the door. For a moment he thought he was going to stick the gun though and shoot. Instead, those blocking the door pushed it shut.

Four more shots hit the door. Then silence.

Police stormed the room a short while later. Evans held up his hands, signaling he meant no harm. Two rescuers helped him out of the classroom into the hall, an obstacle course of blood pools, bodies and one of the shooter's empty magazines.

His stomach was turning, sick from the stench of death.

Evans was at Carilion New River Valley Medical Center in Radford until late Wednesday, where he talked to reporters about what he saw that day.

His leg will heal.

What hurts is his heart.

It goes out to all the victims.

-- Erinn Hutkin; WLS-TV 7, Chicago

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