NRA Convention: Gun Violence Survivors And Moms From Across The Country Come Together In Indianapolis To Represent Overwhelming Majority Of Americans, Including Gun Owners, Who Support Gun Safety
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More than 100 Moms and 20 Gun Violence Survivors to Participate in Weekend Events: Press Conference on Friday, Moms "Stroller Jam" on Saturday, and Quilting Bee on Sunday
New TV Ad and Report on NRA Leadership's Extremism to be Released at Press Conference
INDIANAPOLIS, April 24, 2014
INDIANAPOLIS, April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- This weekend in Indianapolis – on the sidelines of the NRA's annual convention – gun violence survivors, moms and gun safety advocates from across the country will come together to speak out for sensible reforms to end the gun violence that kills 86 Americans every day. At three separate events they will urge NRA leadership to stand with the vast majority of its members who support common-sense gun laws including the 82 percent of gun owners and 74 percent of NRA members who support criminal background checks for all gun sales – a view that the NRA and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre supported barely more than a decade ago. Details of this weekend's events are below:
Friday, April 25 What: Press conference to release new report on the NRA and reveal new television ad featuring gun violence survivors that will air in Indianapolis and Washington, D.C. throughout convention weekend.
Who: Shannon Watts, Founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America Indiana State Representative Ed Delaney Lucia McBath, son Jordan Davis killed in 2012 Tom Sullivan, son Alex killed in 2012 Aurora theater shooting Jennifer Longdon, gun owner and gun violence survivor Beth Meeks, Executive Director, Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence Matthew Ellis, Chief Executive Officer, Episcopal Health Ministries
When: 11:00 AM EST
Where: Regions Tower Hotel: Conference Rooms B & C 211 N Pennsylvania Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Saturday, April 26 What: More than 100 moms from across the country and 20 gun violence survivors will gather for a "stroller jam" rally to end gun violence.
Who: Shannon Watts, Founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America Marie Delus, veteran whose nephew was shot and killed Erica Lafferty, mother was principal of Sandy Hook elementary school Mary Reed, gun owner and survivor of the 2011 Tucson shooting Julia Chester, professor who was on lockdown during Purdue shooting, Regional Manager for Moms Demand Action
When: 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Where: Indiana War Memorial, Veterans Memorial Plaza 50 E Michigan St, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Sunday, April 27 What: Quilting bee for the "Mother's Dream Quilt Project", a collection of quilts composed of meaningful fabric from victim or survivors of gun violence such as a piece of clothing or a beloved blanket.
When: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Where: Indianapolis Marriott East, 7202 E 21st St, Indianapolis, IN 46219
Spokespeople available for interview throughout the weekend include:
Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, is a 43-year-old mother of five children. Watts was not an activist or involved in gun issues prior to the shootings at Sandy Hook on Dec. 14, 2012. The day after the tragedy, she started a Facebook page called Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. Since then, Moms Demand Action has become a nonprofit organization with a chapter in every state of the country. Watts' goal is for Moms Demand Action to become the Mothers Against Drunk Driving of safe gun laws.
Cleopatra and Nathaniel Cowley-Pendleton – Cleopatra and Nathaniel's 15 year old daughter Hadiya Pendleton was murdered on January 29, 2013, when she was shot and killed in Harsh Park on Chicago's South Side. Hadiya had participated in President Obama's public inaugural celebration on January 21, 2013.
Marie Delus — Marie's Nephew, Pierre-Paul Jean-Paul was shot in Queens, NY on November 11, 2008. Two of her sons were also shot in separate incidents, and both survived. Marie is a grandmother and a Marine Corp Veteran for Desert Storm. She is a member of Moms Demand Action.
Carol Gaxiola – Carol's 14-year old daughter Jasmin was murdered on October 14, 1999, in retaliation for having witnessed an earlier drive-by shooting. Luis Rivera, one of the killers, had an extensive criminal history, but he and the other killer, Genara Gonzales, were able to purchase the murder weapon from a private seller at a gun show who did not conduct a background check.
Colin Goddard – Colin was shot four times and survived the April 16, 2007 mass shooting at Virginia Tech that killed 32 of his classmates and professors. Colin is a Senior Policy Advocate at Everytown for Gun Safety.
Paul Kemp – Paul is the brother-in-law of Steven Forsyth, 45, who was killed by a masked gunman armed with a Bushmaster AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle in a mall in Clackamas, Oregon in December 2012. The shooter fired more than 60 rounds, killing Steven and another woman and critically wounding a third individual, before taking his own life. Paul is a gun owner.
Neil Heslin – Neil's six-year old son Jesse Lewis was a first grade student who was murdered in the shooting at Sandy Hook School shooting.
Erica Lafferty – Erica's mother, Dawn Hochsprung, was the principal of Sandy Hook Elementary School who was killed in the Newtown shooting. Dawn died while trying to attack the shooter to protect the school's students.
Jennifer Longdon – Jennifer and her then-fiancée survived a shooting November 15, 2004, which left her permanently paralyzed and confined to a wheel chair. Longdon and her then-fiancé were heading to a drive-through restaurant after work when someone in another vehicle sideswiped their truck and fired five shots. The assailant was never found. The bullet severed her spinal cord and paralyzed her. Her then-fiancée David Rueckert was left blinded by one of the bullets. She is an avid shooter, gun owner and a member of the Phoenix Police Department's Citizen Police Academy.
Patricia Maisch – Patricia attended Rep. Gifford's Congress on your Corner event. Pat helped disarm the shooter by grabbing his second magazine clip after he was tackled.
Lucia McBath – Lucia is the mother of Jordan Davis. Her son was shot and killed at a gas station in Jacksonville, Florida on November 23, 2012. She is a national spokesperson for Moms Demand Action.
Beth Meeks – Beth is the Executive Director Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Annette Nance-Holt – Annette's son Blair was on a bus heading home from school on May 5, 2007, when he was caught in the crossfire of a gang shooting. He died protecting another student. The shooter, Michael Pace, acquired the gun from a friend, Kevin Jones, moments before the shooting. Neither of them was old enough to legally possess the weapon. Annette works as a Chicago Fire Captain.
Kate Ranta – On November 2, 2012, Kate Ranta and her father were shot twice each by her estranged husband, Thomas Maffei – in front of their 4-year-old son. Maffei stalked her to her new apartment and shot through the door she and her father were pushing against so he couldn't get in. Kate's father was shot in upper left arm and rib cage and Kate was shot through middle of right hand and in the chest. Kate had sought a restraining order against Maffei on three occasions but was denied by a judge. Maffei is now in jail awaiting trial. Kate is a national spokesperson for Moms Demand Action.
Mary Reed – Mary attended Rep. Gifford's Congress on Your Corner event with her teenage children. Mary was shot in the arm and back as she shielded her daughter Emma from the shooter. Mary is a gun owner.
Gilles Rousseau – Gilles's daughter, Lauren Rousseau, was a permanent substitute teacher killed in the Sandy Hook School shooting. Lauren was a posthumous recipient of the Presidential Citizens Medal.
Kim Russell – Originally from Atlanta, GA, Kim Russell now lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband and two children. She is a survivor of gun violence and the National Director of Outreach for Moms Demand Action.
Cheryl Stumbo – Cheryl is a survivor of Seattle's Jewish Federation shooting in 2006, where one person was killed and five were injured.
Tom Sullivan - Tom's son Alex Sullivan was killed in the 2012 Aurora movie theater shooting on his 27th birthday.
Karina Vargas – Karina is a gun violence survivor who was shot by a stray bullet in 2010 outside Central High School in Aurora. She is now paralyzed from the waist down.
Antonius Wiriadjaja – Antonius was shot in the abdomen by a stray bullet in Bed Stuy, Brooklyn. The shooter was never caught.
About Everytown for Gun Safety
Everytown for Gun Safety is a movement of Americans fighting for common-sense policies that will reduce gun violence and save lives. Everytown is the largest gun violence prevention organization in the country with more than 1.5 million supporters including moms, mayors, survivors, and everyday Americans who are fighting for reforms that respect the Second Amendment and protect people. At the core of Everytown are Mayors Against Illegal Guns, founded in 2006 by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Boston Mayor Tom Menino, and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a grassroots movement of American mothers founded on the day after Newtown. Learn more at www.everytown.org and follow us @Everytown