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Sandy Hook survivor Jackie Hegarty makes plea for more gun safety measures ahead of 10-year anniversary of shooting

Nearly 10 years after Sandy Hook shooting, gun control fight continues
Nearly 10 years after Sandy Hook shooting, gun control fight continues 02:50

NEW YORK -- Next week will mark 10 years since the shooting massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

Twenty children and six educators were killed.

On Wednesday night, a candlelight vigil was held in Washington D.C. On Thursday, there was another strong call to action by survivors and family members.

One by one, survivors and family members read the names and showed the pictures of those lost to gun violence all over the country.

"Killed in Queens, New York. Only 17 years old. Pass the ban," one said.

"She was murdered while shopping in Buffalo," another said.

Sandy Hook shooting survivor's powerful plea 02:31

Connecticut lawmakers joined them in urging the Senate pass a ban on assault weapons already passed by the House.

"No one in America is safe. No place is secure. No community is immune from the tragedy of gun violence," Sen. Richard Blumenthal said.

The Newtown Action Alliance noted the numbers since Dec. 14, 2012.

"Since that horrific day, over 1 million Americans have been shot and over 400,000 Americans have been killed," one speaker said.

To further their message, the group passed out letters to senators and pamphlets on child ID and DNA kits, used to identify loved ones.

Wearing a shirt depicting John Lennon, who died on this day in 1980 after being shot, Manuel Oliver, a father of a Parkland, Florida, shooting victim, painted a picture for senators about what it's like to be a family member of a mass shooting victim.

"You're waiting in a room not knowing what happened to your loved one," Oliver said, "and suddenly ... Allison Schumer ... Ellie McConnell ... These are the names of your kids, members of Senate. Now you know how it feels."

On Wednesday night at the 10th annual national vigil for all victims of gun violence, Sandy Hook survivor Jackie Hegarty, then just 7 years old, spoke about that day.

"Worrying that that door would burst open and I would never go home to see my mommy, daddy and my siblings," said Hegarty, who is now 17. "We are asked to be brave while hiding under our desks in our classrooms, while too many elected officials lack the courage to pass common sense laws to save our lives."

Congress did pass the most significant firearm reforms in nearly three decades after the massacres in Buffalo and Uvalde, Texas. They enhance background checks, boost school security, and help develop red flag laws, among other things.

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