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One Year After Ohio State Attack, Students And Staff Reflect

Esther Honig
Ohio State students and staff gathered in the Ohio Union for a commemoration of last year's car-and-knife attack, which injured 13.

Singing the alma mater "Carmen Ohio," Ohio State University students and faculty gathered at the Ohio Union on Tuesday to commemorate the anniversary of last year's car-and-knife attack on campus.

At the President Michael V. Drake reflected on the terror of that morning and the resiliency of the community that emerged afterward.

"We have times that are wonderful and times that are not so good and times that are tragic," Drake said. "The most important thing for all of us is that we come together to support ourselves through those times and we continue to work together to make this a better world."

On the morning of Nov. 28, 2016, Ohio State student Abdul Artan drove his car into a crowd of students and began attacking them with a butcher knife. Investigators believe that Artan, a Somali refugee, acted alone but was radicalized in part by an American-born cleric killed by a U.S. drone strike in Yemen.

In a videotaped interview released on Monday, Ohio State officer Alan Horujko—who was on campus responding to a reported gas leak when the attack happened—said he had gone through a training for a knife attack just a month prior. After a brief chase, Horujko shot and killed Artan. 

“All I knew was people were being hurt, and I didn’t like that,” Horujko said.

A Franklin County grand jury cleared Horujko this summer. 

While 13 students and faculty were injured, no one except Artan was killed, and the incident lasted just under two minutes.

"Our community was strong that morning, the first responders were strong that morning, the students were strong that morning, the faculty were strong that morning, the staff members strong that morning, our personnel at our medical center strong that morning, and all throughout Central Ohio, we came together as a community," Drake said.

A campus-wide alert, sent at 9:56 a.m., alerted students and staff of an "active shooter on campus" and told them to "Run, Hide, Fight." By that time, Artan had already been stopped, but the message caused more confusion about the situation. Ohio State said in April they would reconfigure their emergency response system.