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7th Annual Vigil For Gun Violence Victims Held In Washington

Courtesy of St Mark’s Episcopal Church on Capitol Hill

Next week marks seven years since the Newtown school shooting that killed 20 children and six educators. Advocates held a vigil in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, then called on Congress to act on gun control.

“Jamie Gunther, forever 14.” “Ethan Song, age 15.”

At St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on Capitol Hill, nearly 150 people from around the country took turns reading names of family members they lost to gun violence.

“Taylor Hayes, 7. Milton Carrington, 16. Dante Webb, 17.”

This is the seventh year the church has hosted the vigil, organized by the Newtown Action Alliance. “We noticed that there is a growing interest from families and survivors across the country to join us at this national vigil,” said the group's founder, Po Murray.

Natalie Barden is with the Junior Newtown Action Alliance. Her brother Daniel was killed in the shooting.

“When our tragedy happened, we felt we couldn’t do much to make a change. However, over the years we have learned that we have the ability to create change.”

No major gun control laws have been signed since the shooting. Earlier this year the U.S. House of Representatives passed bills that would strengthen background checks and close loopholes for gun sales.

Those bills have stalled in the Senate. U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut called on Republican leaders to allow them to move forward.

“We are closer than ever, on the cusp of passing these measures. And two individuals stand in the way. Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump. If they do their job, we can make America safer.”

More than 700,000 Americans have been killed or injured by gun violence since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012.

Davis Dunavin loves telling stories, whether on the radio or around the campfire. He started in Missouri and ended up in Connecticut, which, he'd like to point out, is the same geographic trajectory taken by Mark Twain.
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