McCain was a international studies major, according to a statement from the family. McCain spent several years of her childhood in Oklahoma before her father's Navy career took the family to Florida, Texas and then to Virginia. The 20-year-old was in her first year at Virginia Tech, majoring in international studies, when she was shot and killed Monday during her German class in Norris Hall.
"Lauren was an extremely intelligent young lady," her uncle Jeff Elliott said. "She was beautiful, loving and happy, and just a fun girl to be around. She's special to everybody." Several of McCain's relatives flew to Virginia to be with McCain's parents, Dave and Sherry McCain, after news of her death reached Oklahoma on Tuesday.
"She was the sweetest girl you ever saw," said Fern Martin, her 90-year-old great-grandmother. "She was so loving and so sweet. Everybody loved her." Martin said McCain, her oldest great-granddaughter, taught Sunday school and "was a good girl." A cousin, Erin Elliott of Shawnee, described McCain as an avid reader and said she worked in a department store for about a year to save money before enrolling in college.
"She had a great sense of humor," Erin Elliott said. "We would pull pranks on the boys simple stuff, like hanging their underwear from a tree." She said she'd exchange e-mails with McCain and talk to her on the telephone regularly, and McCain would visit for a week around Christmas and in the summer. They'd talk about dreams of one day taking a trip to Germany and joke about building a mansion and living together.
On a MySpace.com Web page, McCain wrote: "The purpose and love of my life is Jesus Christ."
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