Community takes hold on the airwaves

Posted: Tuesday, April 17 at 02:41 pm ET by Petra Cahill, MSNBC.com

In a tragedy where much attention has been paid to new technology such as text messaging and cell phone videos, what is sometimes considered “old media” is providing "a forum to communicate so healing can begin.”

WXLK-FM, better known as K-92 Roanoke, is covering the news following the horrific shooting at Virginia Tech and providing information on topics such as the availability of counseling services and the location of public memorials. But its most important role may be giving locals a much-needed opportunity to talk about the still-unfathomable incident.

Callers on Tuesday shared  stories about how they dealt with news of the tragedy, talked about how they broached the subject with their kids and called for listeners to keep the perpetrator’s family in their prayers, among other things.

The station interspersed its talk segments with music that took on a new poignancy one day after the worst shooting massacre in modern U.S. history, including “What’s Going On?” by Marvin Gaye and Eric Clapton’s, “Tears in Heaven.”


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As officials, students and families struggle to come to terms with the tragedy at Virginia Tech, a team of MSNBC.com reporters and editors and NBC News producers and correspondents is on the scene.