Virginia, One Person at a Time

April 19th, 2007 by Larry Smith

464730226_d0fa955bd5_o.jpgWhen people ask me why I started SMITH, I have lots to say. If you know me, you know I’m capable of going on and on about my desire to create a new kind of storytelling magazine (I just read somewhere that if you aren’t boring people to death with you desire to talk about your project then you’re not passionate enough; I don’t have that problem). The short answer is that inspiration came from three sources:

• My grandfather, who everyone called “Smitty,” and on those rare times my grandmother let him talk, was a great storyteller.
• Working at Yahoo Internet Life and watching the beginning of user-generated content and the thrill we all had posting a comment, forwarding a video, writing or reading a blog.
• Living in New York City during 9/11 and being inspired by one of the ways the newspaper of record chose to tell the biggest story of our lifetime: one person at a time.

And it’s with that personal preamble ramble that I encourage you to skip the video of Cho Seung-Hui, a video that’s probably the most watched in history (or will be soon), and spend some quieter moments reading through these short profiles of the men and women killed in at Virginia Tech. In plain language, person to person, this is what was lost on April 16, 2007.

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