On Feb. 14, 2018, tragedy struck at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, killing 14 students, three educators and wounding 17 others. Just a few short weeks ago marked the one year anniversary of the shooting, and this has not been a forgotten incident.
The school day of Feb. 14, 2019 was not a normal day. For the one year mark, Florida schools had a moment of silence at 10:17 a.m. in remembrance for the lives lost that day. This time was chosen because most students would be in class and for the symbolism of 17 minutes after the hour honoring the 17 killed and the 17 injured. One Marjory Stoneman freshman Jayden Jaus talked to the The Associated Press about what the moment meant to him. It was “a bit emotional and a little intense,” Jaus said.
Stoneman Douglas High School had a “Day of Service and Love” instead of normal classes. Students wore #MSDStrong T-shirts to show their love and support for their school and community. During the day, there were projects including serving breakfast to first responders and packing meals for underprivileged children. With this being such an emotional day, the school provided grief counselors and therapy dogs to ease the pain. Also, there was a memorial set up outside the school filled with flowers, inspirational messages and painted stones.
This shooting prompted events to promote gun control. The students who survived formed the March for Our Lives, which advocates for ending gun violence and mass shootings, helping spark dozens of gun safety laws. Since the shooting there have been some changes in response to these events. Florida raised the minimum firearm purchasing age from 18 to 21 and enacted a “Red Flag” law empowering authorities to temporarily remove guns from someone believed to pose a threat.
Senior Max Moinfar has kept up to date with these changes and sees a light at the end of the tunnel. “I still hear things going on about new student movements and stuff like that. This event was definitely not forgotten and I think there will be significant changes that come from it,” Moinfar said.