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Last Updated: Friday, 20 April 2007, 13:08 GMT 14:08 UK
Virginia hero is buried in Israel
Funeral of Livui Librescu
Marlena Librescu spoke of the pain she felt at her husband's loss
A 76-year-old professor who was killed while protecting his students during the Virginia Tech shooting has been buried in Israel, his adopted home.

Romanian-born Holocaust survivor Liviu Librescu was hailed a hero for holding the gunman at bay as his class escaped.

Romania awarded Mr Librescu its highest medal and officials attended the burial in the central Israeli town of Raanana.

"I walked through the streets with my head held high because I have such a father," son Joe said in his eulogy.

It hurts, it hurts a lot for your suffering in your last moments. I will never know what passed through your mind
Marlena Librescu

Hundreds of grieving friends and relatives gathered at the Jewish cemetery in Raanana for Mr Librescu's funeral.

The aeronautics engineer and Virginia Tech lecturer for 20 years was one of 32 victims killed in the worst shooting rampage in modern US history.

Jewish human rights organisation the Simon Wiesenthal Centre has highlighted the "unbelievable" irony that he died saving others on the annual Holocaust memorial day.


Mr Librescu is thought to have saved the lives of a number of students by using his body to barricade a classroom door before he was gunned down by Cho Seung-hui.

Romanian awards given to Livui Librescu
Romania has awarded the late professor its highest honour
His heroism has been recounted by e-mails from students in the aftermath of the killings.

An impromptu shrine for him has been set up on the Virginia Tech campus where mourners have laid flowers.

His wife of 42 years, Marlena Librescu, arrived at the funeral with Israeli consular officials. Romania officials laid a wreath at the grave.

"It hurts, it hurts a lot for your suffering in your last moments. I will never know what passed through your mind in the last moments," she said during the ceremony.

Romanian government representative Georgi Angelescu awarded Mr Librescu a medal for his scientific accomplishments and heroism.

During the Nazi era, Mr Librescu was sent to a labour camp and then to a ghetto in eastern Romania, his family said.

He emigrated to Israel in 1978 after refusing to give allegiance to the communist regime of Nicolae Ceausescu and began teaching at Virginia Tech in 1985.

Tributes are paid to the professor at his funeral

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