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Flowers in front of Beam Hall

UNLV Special Collections & Archives has launched a preservation initiative to document the tragic December 6, 2023 shooting on UNLV’s Maryland Parkway campus.

December 6 tragic events

At around 11:30 am on that day, an armed individual entered Frank and Estella Beam Hall on the Maryland Campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The gunman killed three UNLV faculty members. Among them were Cha Jan "Jerry" Chang and Patricia Navarro-Velez, both from Lee Business School, and Naoko Takemaru, a professor in Japanese Studies at the College of Liberal Arts. A fourth faculty member sustained severe injuries.

After exiting Beam Hall, the gunman was killed by University Police Southern Command in a gunfire exchange. Campus was locked down until authorities secured the area and confirmed there were no further threats. Subsequently, classes were canceled for the remainder of the week. In-person classes along with finals for the semester were eventually canceled as well.

Memorial collection project

The collecting initiative was established to help the university with several objectives:

  • Documenting the experiences of the campus community.
  • Remembering the victims and their impact on students and colleagues.
  • Highlighting the response of both the university and the wider community in the aftermath.

We are collecting the following materials:

  • Documentation of the mass shooting and its aftermath.
  • Operations, activities, and procedures of organizations involved.
  • Information about the lives of the victims.
  • Experiences of survivors, witnesses, and community members.
UNLV campus Dec. 6 memorial

What’s currently in the collection

The UNLV December 6, 2023 Memorial Collection currently includes:

  • Items left at spontaneous memorials, such as handwritten notecards, small religious tokens, bracelets, teddy bears, and artificial flowers
  • Videos of the UNLV vigil service held on Dec. 13, 2023
  • Archived UNLV websites, and condolence items sent to campus administration.
  • Photographs and journal entries related to the day of the shooting donated by two members of the UNLV community.

We are still accepting the following donations, including:

  • Artifacts left at public memorials, such as cards, posters, and photographs
  • Artistic responses, such as poetry, music, and drawings
  • Audio and video recordings, such as news coverage, documentaries, and witness recordings
  • Condolence/sympathy/support letters and cards
  • Correspondence (including emails)
  • Memorial programs and artifacts
  • News clippings
  • Photographs
  • Reports
  • Scrapbooks
  • University records, reports, newsletters, policies, social media, and websites

Evaluating donated materials

Materials will be assessed for unique and enduring historical value documenting the mass shooting and its aftermath. This includes the operations, activities, and procedures of organizations and individuals associated with the shooting and its aftermath; the lives of the victims; and the experiences of survivors and witnesses.

The goal of the oral history project and the memorial collection is to create a comprehensive archive that documents all aspects of December 6 and its aftermath.

UNLV Libraries staff archiving Dec. 6 materials
UNLV Libraries staff archiving Dec. 6 materials

Oral history project for the December 6 shooting

The UNLV Oral History Research Center has launched the “UNLV Remembers: An Oral History of the 6 December 2023 Shooting” project to enhance the historical record around that day with first-hand accounts of the tragedy, campus and community response, and recovery efforts.

The center aims to conduct interviews with various groups including students, faculty, staff, alumni, first responders, and community members. These interviews will cover their experiences on December 6 and in the following days, weeks, and months of the recovery process.

In addition, the center wants to collect remembrances of Patricia Navarro-Velez, Jerry Cha-Jan Chang, and Naoko Takemaru, the three faculty members who were tragically killed in the shooting. 

The project is designed to be a part of a national mourning and memory effort that researchers can use to document this era in American history. 

Participate in an oral history interview

If you are interested in participating in an oral history interview, fill out the UNLV Remembers participation form

If selected to participate, we encourage you to take advantage of the mental health and counseling resources available through the campus and community.

UNLV campus Dec. 6 memorial
Flowers at UNLV Dec. 6 memorial
Notes from memorial attendees
Notes from memorial attendees

Contact us

Donating physical materials to the collection

Contact Sarah Quigley (, director of Special Collections and Archives or Aaron Mayes (, visual materials curator.

Oral history project information

Contact Claytee White (, founding director of the Oral History Research Center, or Stefani Evans (, project manager.