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BLACKSBURG, Va. -- It was less than a year that Travis Crawford owned Joe's Diner on North Main Street when he received a frantic call.

"My mom called me and said, 'Did you hear what happened in Blacksburg?'" Crawford remembered.

Travis Crawford

Travis Crawford

She had just watched a breaking news report about a shooting on the Virginia Tech campus. At the time, there were only a few reported casualties.

"When I heard the news I was at our Radford location," Crawford said. "I got the call and hauled rear end over here. It was definitely scary."

Crawford remembered seeing police cruisers rushing down the highway towards a snowy Blacksburg and officers stationed at every corner on April 16, 2007. He arrived to frightened customers and employees huddled inside of his mom and pop diner.

Virginia Tech

Virginia Tech

"I just locked the doors down until we got the clear from the police department that the shooter was dead and we could reopen," he said.

The shooter wouldn't leave campus, but killed 32 people in two buildings. The Virginia Tech massacre would be one of the deadliest mass shootings in our country's history.

A poster for an event held on the anniversary of the massacre at Virginia Tech hangs in Joe’s Diner.

A poster for an event held on the anniversary of the massacre at Virginia Tech hangs in Joe’s Diner.

Crawford said the event has brought local business owners together to put in place plans to stay safe.

"It's something that we never thought about we had to do as far as someone's loose on campus or shooting like that," Crawford explained. "We tell all the employees if there's anything like that it's not worth your life or anyone else's. Just lock the door."

A memorial at Virginia Tech.

A memorial at Virginia Tech.

Crawford said 10 years after the shooting, life in Blacksburg goes on.

"We are Virginia Tech," he said. "We will stay strong and keep doing what we need to do."