It’s been a year.
A whole year since the day our phones buzzed with news alerts, that a gunman was on campus at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, a quiet community just 20 minutes away from us in Boca. It’s where our friends and families live, it’s a high school where our loved ones send their children.
As the afternoon gave way to the evening, we finally got a number: 17. Seventeen teachers and students were killed. We were struck by how young so many of them were—much of the shooting happened in the freshman building, and nine of those killed were just 14 and 15 years old. I think about how excited they must have been to be in high school.
Since then, there have been marches, rallies, school walkouts, benefit concerts, and battle cries from both sides of the aisle on how to handle gun laws. But today, one year later, the community is sullen. We remember how a year ago, we were making plans for Valentine’s Day, watching flowers be delivered into offices. Then, as the death toll rose throughout the day, nothing else seemed to matter. MSD’s campus became a living tribute, with people leaving notes, stuffed animals, photographs, flowers, banners, posters.
We promised we would never forget, so today, we say the names of the 17 students and teachers:
Alyssa Alhadeff, age 14
Scott Beigel, 35
Martin Duque, 14
Nicholas Dworet, 17
Aaron Feis, 37
Jaime Guttenberg, 14
Chris Hixon, 49
Luke Hoyer, 15
Cara Loughran, 14
Gina Montalto, 14
Joaquin Oliver, 17
Alaina Petty, 14
Meadow Pollack, 18
Helena Ramsay, 17
Alex Schachter, 14
Carmen Schentrup, 16
Peter Wang, 15
Throughout South Florida, students, professional athletes, police departments, nonprofits, and houses of worship are paying their respects. People are doing community service work, there was a moment of silence at 10:17 a.m.
Today, we’re all #MSDStrong.
At 10:17 a.m. on February 14, @browardschools invites the community, school district’s across the state, and everyone in Broward County to join in observing a moment of silence to honor the 17 lives lost, and recognize the 17 others injured one year ago. #MSDStrong #BCPSStrong pic.twitter.com/sYHbzxVKnr
— Broward Schools (@browardschools) February 14, 2019
Messages of gratitude to first responders this morning at Stoneman Douglas. Students and teachers gathered to feed them on the one year anniversary of the tragic shooting. #2getherinserviceandlove #MSDstrong @WPLGLocal10 pic.twitter.com/BEQs7UpiP5
— Amy Viteri (@AmyViteriWPLG) February 14, 2019
— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) February 14, 2019
One year ago today, 17 lives were lost in the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Today and always we remember them; they will not be forgotten. #MSDstrong #17eagles pic.twitter.com/vWiHizHlpZ
— Florida Department of Education (@EducationFL) February 14, 2019
— Hannah Morse (@mannahhorse) February 14, 2019
On this day, one year ago, the communities of Parkland and Coral Springs faced an unthinkable tragedy. We ask that you keep the victims in your thoughts and know we will do everything in our power to help prevent evil acts like this from ever occurring again. Forever #MSDStrong pic.twitter.com/zAP8EewUmZ
— Coral Springs Police (@CoralSpringsPD) February 14, 2019
This has been a difficult year for our community. Today, we remember the senseless tragedy that occurred at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and stand together with Parkland to honor the victims who were lost and wounded on February 14, 2018. #MSDStrong
— Broward Sheriff (@browardsheriff) February 14, 2019
Some 3rd graders @BocaRatonElem from @pbcsd are remembering and sending ❤ to @DouglasHigh. We will NEVER forget. #strongertogether #17ActsofKindness #MSDStrong #MakeItCountPBC pic.twitter.com/4abcPjyaQn
— Theo Wiles (@theo_wiles) February 14, 2019
— Vincent Taylor (@BallOut_96) February 14, 2019
At 10:17, @browardschools paused for a moment of silence to honor the 17 victims. Here’s what that looked like, and sounded like, at Project Grow Love, the memorial garden at the corner of campus. #MSDstrong @nbc6 pic.twitter.com/sjaPrWmegb
— Ari Odzer (@ariodzernbc6) February 14, 2019
Remembering the 17 lives lost one year ago. As friends and families heal, we have to remember to do our part and continue to call for the change that is needed. #ParklandStrong #MSDStrong pic.twitter.com/LbWWiRMshI
— DWade (@DwyaneWade) February 14, 2019
Let’s never forget the 17 lives lost in 2018. A beautiful tribute at @bocaratonhs where I’m proudly a teacher for @pbcsd. 17 empty desks. #NeverForget #NeverAgain #ParklandStrong #MSDStrong #StrongerTogether pic.twitter.com/s4Ed8mQyJs
— Aurora Lydia Dominguez (@AuroraMiami) February 14, 2019