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17 Empty Desks In Sherborn Mark First Anniversary Of Florida School Shooting

SHERBORN (CBS) - Massachusetts is remembering the victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting massacre on the first anniversary Thursday with memorials and tributes.

One of the most poignant is on the front lawn of the Sherborn Unitarian Universalist church in Sherborn.

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The 17 empty desks outside the Sherborn Unitarian Universalist church. (Photo credit: Nick Giovanni - WBZ-TV)

Seventeen desks sit empty. Each one represents one of the 17 lives lost on February 14, 2018 in Parkland, Florida. Each desk has the name of a victim written on the back.

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The 17 empty desks outside the Sherborn Unitarian Universalist church. (WBZ-TV)

"Nothing speaks about absence more than an empty chair," Rev. Nathan Detering told WBZ-TV. "We wanted their names to be remembered because I have heard a lot of parents say – on the news and what have you – that they're wondering if the issue of gun control has almost transcended the individual lives of the kids, you know? And there's a tension, right, between the issue and the biographies."

CBS Miami Coverage: Parkland - One Year Later

Detering said the desks are meant to serve as a concrete reminder. "We're visceral people, we're not digital people. And we can see the names of those people, and we all remember what it's like to be in school. So something about those desks, we're able to put ourselves in that spot in ways we can't maybe in other ways."

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas Alumni of New England will hold a candlelight vigil at 5:30 p.m. at the Parkman Bandstand on Boston Common. They will read the names of the 14 students and 3 staff members who were murdered. That will be followed by 6 minutes and 20 seconds of silence, which was how long the shooting lasted.

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