A billboard in Roseburg, Oregon Photo: Nora Vitz Harrison
Volume XVI | Issue 1 | Spring 2016
Cover Story

When a tragedy hits, a community responds

Oct. 1, 2015, was a day that rocked our world and broke our hearts. The mass shooting at Umpqua Community College was so personal, so local, so much about us. The kind of tragedy that we somehow thought only could happen in other communities, or in other schools, actually happened to us — in Roseburg, Oregon, a town of 22,000 residents.

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Community Vitality is a storytelling publication published since 2000. Send article ideas, questions or requests for past issues to communityvitality@tfff.org.

© 2000-2021 The Ford Family Foundation. Anne Kubisch, President; Mandy Elder, Editor; Megan Monson, Assistant Editor

Billboard against a blue sky: proclaims UCC Strong

When a tragedy hits, a community responds

Oct. 1, 2015, was a day that rocked our world and broke our hearts. The mass shooting at Umpqua Community College was so personal, so local, so much about us. The kind of tragedy that we somehow...  Read More

What happened

Roseburg, Oregon: Nine people were killed when a gunman opened fire in a classroom at Umpqua Community College. Eight others were injured. The victims included the class professor, age 67, and eight...  Read More

The first 72 hours

Each time a mass tragedy happens in the United States or beyond, those of us who responded to the shooting at Umpqua Community College feel a shiver. We know the horror. We know the community is...  Read More

Nonstop demands test leaders

The events of Oct. 1, 2015, spun Umpqua Community College into a whirlwind that demanded much more of college leadership than anyone ever would have anticipated.  Read More

Set up for donations immediately

Douglas County has become a member of a club no one wants to join — the group of communities faced with unimaginable calamity. As other agencies played their parts in the aftermath of the Umpqua...  Read More

Lucas Eibel, 1997-2015

Lucas Eibel loved animals. People who knew the 18-year-old described him as thoughtful and kind, with an unexpectedly wicked sense of humor. One of five siblings in a tight-knit family, he was by all...  Read More

How a foundation can help

The Ford Family Foundation was one of many organizations that stepped up to help support Umpqua Community College and the community. One small bit of good luck — if it can be called that — was that...  Read More

Snapshots of support

From across the country, UCC received a wave of support. Cards and posters flooded the college mail room. A moment of silence was observed at community colleges throughout the United States.  Read More

Many acts of kindness

The billboard off the interstate near Roseburg boldly proclaims “I am UCC” next to a graphic of a Riverhawk, the college mascot. For a jarring moment I wondered, How was that billboard put up so...  Read More

Sharing our stories

There are distinct moments when the world changes. There is before and after. For those touched by the events at Umpqua Community College, Oct. 1, 2015, was one of those moments. All of the people...  Read More

Mercy Medical Center ER rises to the challenge

As with all hospital emergency departments, Mercy Medical Center in Roseburg had drilled for a disaster, but never for an event involving multiple gunshot victims.  Minutes after the Umpqua Community...  Read More

An advocate for the victims

Kelly Wright, victim services director at the Douglas County District Attorney’s office, normally assists victims of felony crimes with the judicial process. She provides them with referrals and...  Read More

Flood of mental health volunteers brought help and challenges

Janet Holland, head of Community Health Alliance in Roseburg, was speaking in Astoria before a group of 40 county mental health professionals in a hotel meeting room when she got the call on the...  Read More

Law enforcement: Brief trauma can bring lasting stress

Six minutes after the 911 call about a shooter on the Umpqua Community College campus, two nearby Roseburg Police Department detectives rushed onto the scene. They immediately confronted the shooter...  Read More

Communications needs

Every group involved in the response to the UCC shooting had overwhelming communication needs. Plans were being made quickly — from evacuations of the campus to locations for counseling.  “The...  Read More

When the spotlight fades

For endless days last fall, it seemed like you couldn’t turn on the news without hearing about Roseburg. The shooting at Umpqua Community College grabbed the world’s attention. Media crews besieged...  Read More

Incident Command System

At the University of Oregon, Andre Le Duc and his incident management team are trained to bring order out of the chaos that inevitably results from catastrophic situations. The team is able to...  Read More

Emergency management

When an emergency occurs, the need to communicate is immediate. Emergency management plans give organizations the ability to respond to crises in a calm and systematic manner, with staff who are...  Read More

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