Five Year Anniversary Of Newtown Massacre Vigil in Missoula
On the fifth anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, dozens of Missoulians filled the foyer of Paxson Elementary School to remember the slain, and work for change in America's gun laws.
Mom's Demand Action for Gun Sense Be Smart Montana Lead Dannette Fadness explained the purpose of the gathering on Thursday evening.
“Today is the fifth anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, where we lost 20 children and sis teachers and administrators,” said Fadness. “We’re here today to honor those who we lost to gun violence, but we’re also the other people that we continue to lose as we go on. Downstairs, there’s a Christmas tree with ornaments commemorating several of the mass shootings that have taken place since Newtown, along with some featuring the names of the kids who were killed at Sandy Hook.”
Fadness said the time for silence and acceptance over gun violence has ended.
“We’re not going to be quiet anymore,” she continued. “Enough is enough and something needs to be done. Congress needs to pass laws that keep people safe. In sates that have background checks for all gun sales, women dying from domestic violence by intimate partners is reduced by 47 percent.”
Trauma Program Manager at Providence St. Patrick Hospital, Michelle Cole was in Las Vegas with her family and was able to escape the mass shooting there, but then returned to help other victims.
“My husband, I and my son, who is in a wheelchair, were there in Las Vegas,” Cole said. “Once we got my son safe, my husband, who is also a trauma nurse, and I went back to triage victims of the shooting.”
Cole said she has become part of a movement to help better prepare people for the possibility of a mass shooting wherever it may happen.
“At the hospital, we’re working with the American College of Surgeons and as a trauma program manager, we’re working to teach ‘Stop the Bleed’,” she said. “We want to teach people how to stop the bleeding, to use a tourniquet because first responders can’t get in to an area soon enough, so civilians have to take care of each other. We’re hoping that the fire department will add it to their CPR classes and offer both CPR and Stop the Bleed’ at the same time.”
According to the website 'Everytown for Gun Safety, continued gun violence is taking the lives of 93 Americans a day.