Gadsden County residents gather to pray for Uvalde school shooting victims

An outcry from the community in Quincy against gun violence.
Published: Jun. 2, 2022 at 8:07 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - In Uvalde, Texas, the community continues to mourn 19 students and two teachers killed in a school shooting last week.

Wednesday people in Gadsden County gathered to grieve in solidarity.

Although that attack happened a thousand miles away, Gadsden residents say it’s a reminder of the threat of gun violence in their own community.

Jimmy Salters, the sheriff chaplain who organized this event, said his goal is to bring people together and promote unity during these hard times.

He also wants to see politicians take action to stop the violence.

“Our country cannot stand, and we cannot continue with a loss of life so senseless,” Salters said.

Residents say the school shooting in Uvalde made them fear for the safety of their own children.

“I cannot imagine one of my grands being murdered, being slaughtered, not just in school, but anywhere,” Quincy pastor Sterling Barkley said.

Local pastors organized the event to pray for the families of those who died in Uvalde.

“Dear God, would you help those families?,” pastor Mark Moore said. “Dear God, would you assuage the grief that comes into their heart because of this evil violence?”

Police officers from Quincy, Midway and Chattahoochee attended the event.

Chattahoochee police chief Deric Mordica says the shooting has prompted him to have difficult conversations with his 15-year-old son.

“I told him it could be anyone,” Mordica said. “It could be you next. So you need to be vigilant.”

Mordica said in the wake of the tragedy, he’s also looking at ways to improve safety at the schools in his city.

And, although he doesn’t want to scare his son, he says he’s scared himself.

“My fear is the copycats,” Mordica said. “That’s what I fear. I tell him if you’ve got friends that are talking about this thing, let somebody know.”

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