Following the mass shootings in Texas and Ohio this weekend, Santa Clarita Valley residents gathered Monday for a candlelight vigil.
With candles in hand and peace signs in the air, more than 50 residents paid their respect outside City Hall as they voiced a need for communities to come together to end gun violence.
Passersby honked their horns and cheered while members representing organizations like Moms Demand Action and the Democratic Action Alliance voiced a need for communities to come together and show that they support gun reform.
“I think it’s important to be seen and to let people know that there are others who are concerned about the shootings and violence, so it doesn’t become a normal part of American life,” said Democratic Action Alliance President Chad Kampbell. “I definitely think it’s becoming more of a bipartisan issue as people are waking up to how common (shootings) are across the state and country.”
Fellow vigil attendee and SCV resident Dale Berry mentioned how small California towns like Gilroy and Poway have also been affected by shootings as she shared how local residents fear the possibility of similar situations arising while they’re out at the mall, store or even work.
“I’ve spoken to people who’ve told me they go to bed shaking and crying, and they can’t sleep because they’re scared,” Berry said. “Do you know how that affects our psyche and our functioning on a day-to-day level?
“The toll it takes is evident everywhere. Gun violence doesn’t affect an individual here and an individual there,” she added. “We have to turn it around for the sake of our society and continue to let people know: We are here. We have power. We have numbers.”