MSU professor ‘haunted’ by gunshots 1 year later

LANSING, Mich. (WOOD) — A Michigan State University professor is dealing with survivor’s guilt one year after a deadly attack on campus.

He questions why he wasn’t shot when the gunman opened deadly fire inside of his classroom in Berkey Hall Feb. 13, 2023.

MSU marks one year since deadly campus shooting

“He shot and shot and shot and shot, and I just felt as though this was not real,” said Marco Diaz-Muñoz, assistant professor of Hispanic cultural studies. “That haunted me.”

Diaz-Muñoz said he’s working to pull himself together but can’t seem to shake what he called a nightmare.

“I think there’s a part of me that is not well,” Diaz-Muñoz said. “I feel antsy, nervous and on continuous alert.”

MSU professor thought, ‘This can’t be happening’

Diaz-Muñoz told News 8 he’s relying on therapy to ease the anxiety and to cope with the loss.

“Those kids, I look at them as kids relative to me, some of them didn’t make it. How fair is that? Why were they the ones that passed and not me?” Diaz-Muñoz asked. “When you think in those lines, you feel guilty just for being alive. I felt guilty.”

The shooter killed Arielle Anderson and Alexandria Verner inside Diaz-Muñoz’s classroom. They’re two of three students the gunman killed on campus.

Arielle Anderson, Brian Fraser and Alexandria Verner.
Arielle Anderson, Brian Fraser and Alexandria Verner.

MSU tour guide grapples with questions, memories

Diaz-Muñoz said he struggles to grieve their deaths.

“I cried in those first few days, I cried that night and I grieve to some extent, but very quickly my mind, my psyche, was powerful enough to kind of like shut it down,” Diaz-Muñoz said. “So I’m addressing those feelings and finding a different explanation in therapy, like, ‘You couldn’t change it. You aren’t God to change what happened.'”

Now, Diaz-Muñoz is changing his perspective.

He said he is encouraging both himself and his students to appreciate the fragility of life.

“When I see mine now, I don’t take them for granted,” Diaz-Muñoz said. “We can be here today, and a few minutes later, we’re not.”

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to