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Behind the Scenes

LA Fitness Shootings: One Year Later

Wednesday marks the one-year anniversary of the horrific shooting rampage at an LA Fitness in Pittsburgh, which attracted instant national attention.

Over the weekend, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review ran a remarkable piece on some of the survivors of the shootings, in which gunman George Sodini went into a group exercise class, killed three women and wounded nine others before turning the gun on himself. The newspaper also ran an interesting sidebar about how it might take years for the families of the shooting victims to receive compensation from Sodini's estate.

The first article includes stories of babies born from two of the survivors and also details immense pain from others, many of whom declined to speak about the shootings for the story. Not surprisingly, always-private LA Fitness also declined comment for the story. One interesting note about the refurbished group exercise room in the Collier Township, PA, club is that a window has replaced one of the walls, making it easier for everybody to see everybody.

Here is our initial story from the Aug. 4, 2009, shootings, the industry's reaction the next day and our blog post that includes incredible accounts from the Tribune-Review and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. We also examined this issue in our September 2009 cover story and included Web-only sidebars about the 1993 shootings at a Family Fitness Center in California. Editor Pam Kufahl weighed in on LA Fitness in her First Word column. You also can read all past stories about LA Fitness, including updates after the tragedy.

It's hard to believe that one year has passed. Without a doubt, it's much harder for those still struggling with what happened that night.

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