Local students plan rally honoring school shooting victims

Johnstown, Cambria County, Pa. - Students across our region are planning a walk-out on Wednesday, March 14 calling for an end to gun violence in the wake of the Parkland, Florida school shooting.

Greater Johnstown High School students are planning a rally instead, joining forces with school administrators to say 'enough is enough'.

Students said the tragedy hit close to home for many students impacted by gun violence in Johnstown.

"Especially in Johnstown, there is a lot of gun violence. But a big part is to show respect for the students who have passed away from gun violence. Not just even the Florida students, but all school shootings together," said GJHS senior Gina Smith, who helped organize the rally.

There will be poetry readings, speeches, a symbolic balloon release and a moment of silence for the 17 victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

"It's not necessarily about guns. It's about violence in schools," said Madelyn Moore, a GJHS senior who helped organize the event.

Students want to remember the fallen, hope for the future and call for an end to gun violence.

"We really just wanted to see change in the way we perceive gun violence. It shouldn't be normalized. I think the school shooting in Parkland was really an eye opener for a lot of us. If it can happen over there, what makes you think it can't happen to us," Moore said.

Students said the rally is not just about politics, but paying respect to any victim of gun violence or school shooting.

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