Thousands mourn slain Purdue student at candlelight vigil
Thousands of people gathered on Purdue University's campus for a vigil remembering a student who was killed there.
The bell in Purdue's bell tower rang eight times Tuesday night, signaling the time on a day where time stood still for many students.
8 p.m. was the start of a candlelight vigil for Andrew Boldt who was killed during an on campus shooting in the university's engineering building.
Thousands of Purdue students stood in frigid temperatures, candles blowing in the bitter wind to mourn a man many had never even met. "Taps" rang out in the cold darkness, illuminated only by thousands of candles.
It didn't matter that many of the students didn't know Boldt. He was a Boilermaker, just like them.
"Our prayers tonight are with Andrew and his parents," said one student.
"It's always hard when you lose someone who is young and full of promise. He was an electrical engineer and had a bright future ahead of him," added Rachel Heffner, who didn't know Boldt.
Boldt was just 21, in the prime of his life, just like many of the students who gathered.
"My prayers go out to his family and everyone who did know him," said student Mina Mansoori.
Many who came to pay their respects to Boldt were also mourning a loss of innocence on campus.
"It definitely hits home, 'cause this sort of thing you never think could happen to you, but then here you are at your own school and it's happening right before your eyes," said Heffner.
"This is my home, so I didn't think that anything like this would happen like you hear about it at other places, but you never would believe that it would happen here," added Mansoori.
"You think you're in a safe place here on campus," said student Brad Herman.
Now for the Boilermakers, though, their world feels a little less safe and is a lot more uncertain than it was when they woke up Tuesday morning.