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Donald M. Payne, Jr.

Rwanda genocide survivor has a new life, a new cause

Yves Twagirayezu stood next to his 17-year-old brother and watched the Hutu soldiers behead him and throw him into a 30-foot-deep mass grave. The 11-year-old Tutsi boy knew he was next.

He squirmed from the clutches of a Hutu soldier to jump in after his brother, followed by two other Tutsi boys standing at the rim of the pit. The Hutu soldiers, ordered not to waste bullets on the young prisoners, shoveled on dirt and rocks, figuring they would bury the boys alive.

"I got scared and broke loose," Twagirayezu said. "Once I was in the pit, I just remember the stench of bodies."

Eleven years after crawling out of that grave, the 6-foot-4-inch college...