updated 10/30/2007 5:14:33 PM ET 2007-10-30T21:14:33

Virginia Tech has distributed more than $8.5 million in donations to aid the families of victims of the mass killings on campus in April, school leaders said Tuesday.

Families of the 32 people killed by student gunman Seung-Hui Cho were eligible for cash payments or a combination of funds and endowed scholarships in the victims' names.

Funds also were distributed to more than two dozen who were injured in the classroom building when Cho killed most of his victims and himself, as well as people who were uninjured but in the classrooms during the rampage.

"We make these distributions knowing there's only so much they can do," University President Charles Steger said. "We can't bring back these young people."

All 79 people and families eligible to receive payments and benefits applied to do so.

Families of those killed were eligible for $208,000 in cash or a combination of funds and endowed scholarships in the victims' names.

The five most severely injured received $104,000 plus free tuition as long as they attend Tech. Eight less severely injured were due $46,000 plus free tuition. The 34 other victims received either $11,500 or free tuition.

Another $860,000 of the donations was designated to honor specific victims.

Almost all the money came from private donations made to the Hokie Spirit Memorial Fund, which was set up immediately after the April 16 killings. The university said it distributed about $35,000 more than it received in donations. It will continue to accept donations through the end of the year; if it raises less than $35,000 by then, the president's discretionary fund will cover the remainder.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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