Radford University students support rape survivors

RADFORD, Va. - Rosemary Trible describes when she was sexually assaulted as though it was yesterday, "with that gun to my head he said I know who you are I know where you live and I'll kill you if you tell."

She says, "a man was there and began strangle me and put his gloved hands around my neck and a gun to my head and said ok talk show host what do you do with a gun to your head?"

In reality it's several decades later, but the event still haunts her, "it was a night of the worst horror you can imagine," she says.

To help other victims like herself move forward, Rosemary started the non-profit Fear 2 Freedom, named for a statistic which says that every two minutes, someone is sexually assaulted.

Volunteers bring care packages to hospitals for survivors with things that victims may need.

Rosemary explains that "those that go to the hospital for the exam don't realize they're clothes are kept for evidence. Victims were walking out in paper gowns and at the point of greatest trauma it broke my heart."

Rosemary says when she heard that  one in five college students is assaulted, she knew where she wanted to start.

"I wanted to begin the fight there to change the cultural understanding on this issue," she says.

Hundreds of students at Radford University all showed up to help put together these packages for survivors, including hand written notes from the students.

Alana Abbott, a freshman at Radford says that as she sat down to write the note she thought "wow, what can I say to give this person some confidence after what they went through."

Students of all backgrounds and genders came to support the event, including Carl Svenson, the president of a fraternity at Radford, saying it's not just a problem that impacts one type of person, he says, "I've known a few people that have been victimized before."

Carl says his fraternity has led sexual awareness campaigns in the past, and wanted to come show his support for this initiative as well, saying "it starts one campus at a time so if other people look at what other campuses are doing and mimic that, we can make a huge difference across the country."


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