The President of the United States, Joe Biden, sent this Wednesday a message of support to the families of the 19 children and the two teachers murdered a year ago in a school shooting in Uvalde (Texas): “They will never leave your hearts. They will always be a part of you”said.
The president, in a solemn event at the White House, accompanied by his wife, Jill Biden, and surrounded by 21 white candles -one for each of the dead-, referred to his own experience with mourning to try to offer comfort to the families of the victims.
“They will come back. And when they walk past that ice cream parlor, that park, that thing that will remind them of their son or daughter, they will smile before they shed a tear, and then they will know they are going to get over it,” the president said.
“Our prayer is that that moment will come sooner rather than later,” Biden added.
The 80-year-old president has spoken on many occasions about his experiences with loss: his first wife and daughter died in a car accident when the then senator-elect was 30 years old. Another of his sons, Beau Biden, died in 2015 from brain cancer.
In his message this Wednesday, the Democrat asked Congress to ban the sale of semi-automatic rifles like the one used in the Uvalde massacre and magnified magazines.
Biden said a majority of Americans who own guns also support “sensible” measures to restrict access and prevent shootings.
“It is time to act. To raise our voices. Not as Democrats or Republicans, but as friends, neighbors, parents,” the president said.
He also highlighted that since the Uvalde massacre there have been 650 mass shootings in the United States, which the Gun Violence Archive organization defines as incidents with at least four victims, either dead or wounded, not including the shooter.
Gun violence is, in fact, the leading cause of death among children and adolescents in the country.
One year ago, an 18-year-old armed with a semi-automatic rifle entered Robb de Uvalde Elementary School and killed 19 students and two teachers, before being killed in a confrontation with the police.
Tonight a vigil will take place in the Texan town in honor of the victims in which the relatives are expected to participate.