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Two Years After Parkland Shooting, University of Central Florida Students Remember and Mourn 17 Lives Lost

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Students will hold a candlelight vigil tonight at 6 pm. Photo: Jose Antonio Gallego Vázquez @joseantoniogall

Today marks the second year since the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. Students at the University of Central Florida will hold a vigil to remember the 17 lives lost. 

More than 400 alumni of Marjory Stoneman Douglas attend the University of Central Florida including Junior Robert Schentrup. 

Schentrup’s little sister Carmen died in the shooting. He says he’s in a good place with support of fellow students at the school this year but the day will still be hard for him. 

“But I know that it will still be very emotional and I’m still going to kind of have moments in my day where I’m thinking back to a few years ago. Kind of when I found everything out and like reliving that to some extent.”

The vigil organizer is UCF sophomore Rayanne Anid, a leader in the March for Our Lives movement. 

She says there will be mental health resources on hand for students who are experiencing grief.

“We are making sure that we have our counselors, we have our counseling and psychiatric services here at UCF. We have our counselors attending the vigil. To be there in case anybody needs them. We just really want to make sure that all the resources that UCF has we put to use.”

Anid says the event is apolitical.  But she says it should be a wake-up call for students to advocate for gun reform.

“I want young people to go and I want them to vote. And I want them to be voting for politicians who care about our lives, who will take a stand against the NRA and say that our lives matter more than their profits.”

The vigil, which will include speeches by survivors and victims’ families and a reading of the names of the victims, will start at the Memory Mall at 6 pm. 

Seventeen people were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School when former student Nikolas Cruz opened fire at the school on February 14, 2018.

If you’d like to listen to the story, please click on the clips above.

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »