The Matawan Ribbon Campaign for Virginia Tech


The Matawan Ribbon Campaign for Virginia Tech


When the events of April 16 happened, I was sitting in school, not aware of what was going on. As soon as I got to my eighth period class, which was English 4 with Mr. Lloyd, I sat down and was looking for my pen. A friend of mine walked into class late because he was talking to a teacher. He said, "Something happened at Virginia Tech. 22 people were killed." I looked at him and the entire class looked at me because I am the only one from my high school attending VT in fall 2007. I was upset, but held it together until I got home.

Once I got home, I put CNN on and sat down, processing everything that I was seeing on TV and hearing. My world turned into a big blur. I had to do something to make myself feel better. Two hours after I got home, I went to Michaels and bought enough ribbon and pins to make 30 ribbon pins to hand out to anyone who would take them. Two days later, I ran out of ribbons and had to go to Michaels to buy a lot more. I had people asking me for ribbons. Thursday of that week, my school principal authorized me to sell them as a fundraiser, and he bought the first one. I ended up selling or handing out over 100 ribbons and the money totaled $200. I had my school district cut the check and send it down. When I tell people about my fundraiser, it makes me feel good, because I can say that I did my part to help.


Kaitlin Johnsen




Kaitlin Johnsen




Kaitlin Johnsen, “The Matawan Ribbon Campaign for Virginia Tech,” The April 16 Archive, accessed April 15, 2024,