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Grieving families are now saying their final goodbyes to the children they lost in the Virginia Tech tragedy. Memorial services and funerals have been ongoing for the 32 victims whose lives were cut short, including 19-year-old Mary Read.

Mary, a freshman, was a musician and aspiring school teacher. "Mary was a wonderful girl. She was a big sister. She was a good friend. She was a great daughter and granddaughter," says Cathy, Mary's stepmother. "And it's a source of comfort to us now to know how strong she was in her faith and to know, as her little brothers used to say, Mary is in heaven now. I mean, we know that. And we know she's happy there, and that helps a lot."

Pete, Mary's father, says his daughter wanted to do good things with her life. "She wanted to learn so she could teach. And that was really her core conviction," he says. "I think those were her dreams, and her hope for the future was to be able to do things for other people. That's what she wanted to do in her life."
FROM: The Virginia Tech Videotape Controversy
Published on January 01, 2006