Remembering Virginia Tech Victims

I just received this from Karla Halcomb today.  Sorry it is posted a little late, but please read…

SAIC to Make Virginia Tech Contribution, Support "Orange and Maroon Effect" Day

18 Apr 2007

SAIC has a large contingent of Virginia Tech alumni as employees and many SAIC employees have sons, daughters or relatives who attend Virginia Tech. As soon as we heard about this very sad tragedy, we began contacting all those who might be affected. While it does not diminish the sorrow we feel for the families of those who died, we are relieved to learn none of our Virginia Tech connections were severely harmed. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those who are hurting as a result of this terrible event.

‘Orange & Maroon Effect’ Day: Friday, April 20
To honor the victims and their families, Virginia Tech is encouraging everyone across the country to wear orange and maroon in support. We at SAIC know there will be a lot of orange and maroon in our Virginia locations.

We have learned that one student widely credited with saving lives by barricading the classroom door is the brother of an SAIC employee. Although this young man was among those wounded in the shooting, his injuries were not life threatening. The SAIC management and HR team has extended its full support to our employee. We successfully have contacted all of our recent Virginia Tech interns. All are safe. However, we have learned that two of these young people were in close proximity to the shootings – one was in the dorm where the initial shooting took place and was part of the evacuation; another was just one floor above the shooting spree in Norris Hall. They both were shaken by the experience. We have similar reports from SAIC employees whose sons and daughters attend Virginia Tech.

During this difficult time, I ask that you lend your support in both word and deed to colleagues who are responding to the needs of their families and friends.

Clearly, one does not need a direct, personal connection to Virginia Tech to want to help. A number of employees have asked what we can do – how we can help? Employees who want to make a donation can give to the Hokie Spirit Memorial Fund (http://www.vt.edu/tragedy/memorial_fund.php) established by the university to cover expenses included but not limited to: grief counseling; memorials; communication expenses; comfort expenses; and incidental needs.

Our chairman and CEO, Ken Dahlberg, has authorized a $25,000 donation that SAIC will make to the Hokie Spirit Memorial Fund.

This Friday, April 20, will be "Orange and Maroon Effect" day to honor the victims and their families.

Virginia Tech is encouraging everyone across the country to wear orange and maroon in support. We know there will be a lot of orange and maroon in our Virginia locations and we are encouraging this display of support.

If you see a need that is not being met for employees touched by this tragedy, please contact your manager or HR team. SAIC’s employee assistance program is available to employees and their family members.

Arnold Punaro
Executive VP, Government Affairs, Communications and Support Operations
General Manager, Washington Operations

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