By Samantha Mckelvie for It's Relevant The ENOUGH Campaign held the second annual Stamford Vigil of Hope in commemoration of the second anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting as well as the 60,000 victims of gun violence in America since the Newtown tragedy in December 2012. Supporters of gun violence prevention and common-sense gun safety laws gathered in front of the Ferguson Library to mourn and remember all those who have been lost. The vigil included a candle-lighting, bell-ringing and a moment of silence. It was part of a tribute of more than 170 vigils nationwide in partnership with the Newtown Foundation, Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence and States United to Prevent Gun Violence.
STAMFORD, Conn. -- A Stamford woman whose father was shot to death 22 years ago made a call to remember those who have been killed in that way and to keep their memories alive during a vigil on gun violence Thursday evening.
"I stand here with you tonight to say: Enough," Dana Horowitz said to about 60 people gathered in front of the Ferguson Library in Stamford for a vigil. "We stand together to remember all those lost to gun violence. To remember those that touched our hearts. To remember and show support to those who are survivors. To honor the victims and to let the world know they will never be forgotten."
Her father, Bruce Horowitz, an insurance adjuster, was shot and killed by a client in May 1992 in Hamden.
Dana Horowitz and others gathered for the Vigil of Hope just two days before the two-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook School shooting, where 20 children and six staff members were killed by a lone gunman.
Shira Tarantino, an organizer for the vigil, is a member of The Enough Campaign, a local group pushing for gun safety. She said the vigil was held to remember the Sandy Hook victims as well as the 60,000 Americans who have died in the country in the last two years due to guns.
Although Connecticut has been a leader in enacting stricter gun control legislation, Tarantino said that gun control advocates realize it will take longer to persuade the rest of the country to follow suit.
"We understand that this is going to probably take a generation to turn things around, but we are really concerned because gun violence is an epidemic," she said. "It truly is a public health issue that needs to be addressed."
Stamford Mayor David Martin said too many people lose their lives to guns.
"It's time to end gun violence, and the simple message is: 'Enough is enough,'" he said.
Jack Bryant, from the Stamford chapter of the NAACP, said too many African-Americans, especially teens and young adults, are shot to death or wounded by gunfire.
Also attending the vigil in downtown Stamford were state Reps. William Tong, D-147th District; Gerald M. Fox III, D-146th District; and Caroline Simmons, a Democrat who was just elected in the city's 144th District.
Next Sunday is the second anniversary of the Sandy Hook massacre. Since then, more than 60,000 people have died in America from gunshot wounds. By December next year, if nothing changes, that number will be 90,000.
Shouldn't we be ashamed of this toll gun violence takes? How can we let 30,000 gun deaths a year become an accepted American norm?
Since the tragedy at Newtown, more and more Americans are saying we can't.
The second annual National Vigil to End Gun Violence, a vigil for all gun violence victims, including 60 percent with self-inflicted wounds, will take place Thursday in Washington, D.C. It's sponsored by the Newtown Foundation, in partnership with States United to Prevent Gun Violence and Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence, as well as the Washington National Cathedral in which the vigil is held.
Local vigils are also planned throughout the United States.