Fleming grad stood tall in hearts of manyAn American story in many ways. Son of immigrants. Wonderfully successful academic career. A promising future ahead of him. A life cut short at the hands of a psychotic madman.
By Matt Chittum, The Roanoke Times
Their rivalry was intense, surpassed only by the bond of their friendship.
Zach Zimmerman was William Fleming High School's 2006 valedictorian. Henh Ly, known to many now as Henry Lee, finished right behind him. Friends since elementary school, Zach began to grow after a while. Lee didn't. He called Zimmerman "fatty," and Zimmerman called him "Number Two."
By graduation, Zimmerman was a full head taller than Lee.
"That puts his head at my chest, at my heart," Zimmerman said Sunday at a memorial service for Lee at his old high school. "And that's where he'll stay."
Lee, 20, perished with 31 other people at the hands of an enraged gunman a week ago at Virginia Tech, where he was a freshman computer engineering major.
Sunday's memorial service revealed how his diminutive size belied the huge space he occupied in the hearts of those who loved him.
Some 1,000 mourners packed the Fleming auditorium for the memorial service organized by his classmates, and spilled over into the gym to see the service on closed-circuit television. Some came from several states away. Zimmerman flew in at the expense of Princeton University, which he now attends. (link)
A sad story too often repeated.