Texas school shooting: Community members in Austin honor Uvalde victims, call for gun reform
AUSTIN, Texas - Community members in Austin mourned the loss of the Uvalde, Texas, elementary school victims and called for gun reform as well.
They remembered the 21 killed, including 19 students and 2 teachers.
One attendee, Claudia Garza, who works with young children, talked about why she wanted to show up to a vigil organized by The Coalition Austin.
"Just really hit home a lot, and I just can't imagine them going to school and not coming back," she said.
Organizers say they want the vigil to be a safe space for people to share their grief.
"Before protests and large events, and getting out into the streets can happen, we need to take a bit of time to absorb who we are and what we're doing," Avery White said.
- Who is Salvador Ramos? What we know about Texas elementary school shooting suspect
- Texas school shooting: What we know about the victims in Uvalde
- Texas school shooting: Border Patrol agent killed gunman, reports say
Before the vigil, Moms Demand Action and Moms Against Greg Abbott rallied at the governor's mansion and marched to the state capitol calling for action against gun violence.
"I understand the right to bear arms. What about the right to be safe when you send your kids to school?" activist Idona Griffith said. "We need common sense gun reform."
"What we're promoting isn't taking anybody's guns, we're promoting sensible gun laws like red flag laws, background checks of course...it should be harder to get a gun than it is to get a driver's license, and it's not in this state," Robin Breed with Moms Demand Action said.
At both events, many people worried about children in their own lives.
"My other granddaughter finished first grade this week and her mother had to take her to school and was crying this morning terrified to send her child to school, and we shouldn't have to live like this," Breed said.
State Representative Vikki Goodwin (D-47) also spoke at the Capitol rally. She says she's asked the chair of the Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee to hold a hearing about gun violence.