Dear Students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas School,
On the most poignant day of the year for us we wanted to reach out and offer our deepest and most heartfelt sympathy to you and your teachers and to all the families and friends of those who died at your school on 14th February.
We have watched and listened with tremendous admiration as you have spoken out for what you believe should happen now, a significant change of attitude towards the availability of guns in your country.
Twenty-two years ago today our own lives were devastated when a gunman walked into Dunblane Primary School in Scotland and shot dead sixteen 5- and 6-year-old children and their teacher and injured many more.
The children who were killed or badly injured were our daughters and sons, our grandchildren, our sisters and brothers, our nieces and nephews, our cousins. The teacher was our wife, our sister, our mother.
Five of us are survivors. The gunman owned his four handguns legally, and we knew it had been too easy for him to arm himself with lethal weapons. Like you we vowed to do something about it.
We persuaded British lawmakers not to be swayed by the vested interests of the gun lobby, we asked them to put public safety first and to heed what the majority of the British people wanted. Most politicians listened and acted.
Laws were changed, handguns were banned and the level of gun violence in Britain is now one of the lowest in the world. There have been no more school shootings.
We want you to know that change can happen. It won’t be easy, but continue to remind everyone of exactly what happened at your school and of the devastation caused by just one person with one legally-owned gun. Never let anyone forget.
There will be attempts to deflect you, to divide you and doubtless to intimidate you, but you’ve already shown great wisdom and strength. We wish you more of that wisdom and strength for this toughest of tasks, one that will be so important in order to spare more of your fellow Americans from having to suffer the way you have.
Wherever you march, whenever you protest, however you campaign for a more sensible approach to gun ownership we will be there with you in spirit.
Tonight we will be lighting 17 candles for those who died in Dunblane and will be remembering the 17 who lost their lives in Parkland. Our thoughts will also be with every other victim of gun violence.
We offer you our total support for the March for Our Lives and sincerely hope you achieve success. It can be done. #NeverAgain.
Aimie Adam — Survivor
Matt Birnie, Bev Birnie, Steve Birnie, Lauren Birnie — Survivor and his family
Alison Crozier, John Crozier, Ellie Crozier, Jack Crozier, Fiona Buchanan, Allan Pollock, Allana Pollock, Morag Pollock, Olivia Pollock, Sophie Pollock – Family of Emma Crozier
Barbara Dunn, Martyn Dunn, Alex Dunn — Family of Charlotte Dunn
Eileen Harrild — Survivor
Allison Irvine, Ian Irvine, Bethany Irvine, Rachael Irvine, Scott Irvine, Andrea Linden, Amanda McNamara, James McNamara, Laurence McNamara, Nicholas McNamara, Katherine Robertshaw, Kevin Robertshaw, Mark Robertshaw — Family of Ross Irvine
Duncan McLennan, Liz McLennan, Gregor McLennan, Rachel McLennan, Lauren Shaw — Family of Abigail McLennan
Rod Mayor, Joan Mayor, Debbie Mayor, Esther Proctor — Family of Gwen Mayor
Jenny Morton — Sister of Emily Morton
Mick North, Nicola Cole, Gail Lockwood, Matthew Lockwood, Matthew North, Vanessa North, Christine Warren, Neil Warren, Peter Warren — Family of Sophie North
Andrew O’Donnell, John O’Donnell, Sheila O’Donnell, Katie O’Donnell, Rhona McInnes, Anne Orr — Survivor and his family
Ellen Petrie, Sandy Petrie — Parents of John Petrie
Kenny Ross, Pam Ross, Alison Ross, Andrew Ross, Carolyn Jones, Gareth Jones, Gavin Jones, Irene Smith — Family of Joanna Ross
Adam Savage, Elaine Savage, Gavin Savage, Kane Savage — Survivor and his family
Amy Scallan — Survivor
David Scott, Karen Scott — Parents of Hannah Scott
Kareen Turner, Willie Turner, Duncan Turner — Family of Megan Turner
Isabel Wilson, Guy Wilson, Catherine Wilson — Family of Mhairi MacBeath