Jun 8, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Buffalo shooting survivor's mother: "I do not feel protected"

eneta Everhart, whose son Zaire Goodman, 20, was shot in the neck during the Buffalo Tops supermarket mass shooting and survived, testifies during a House Committee on Oversight and Reform.

Zeneta Everhart, whose son Zaire Goodman, 20, was shot in the neck during the Buffalo supermarket shooting, testifies during a hearing before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. Photo: Jason Andrew /Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Kimberly Rubio, whose daughter was killed in the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, pleaded for Congress to take action in Washington on Wednesday.

Driving the news: "Somewhere out there, a mom is hearing our testimony and thinking, 'I can’t even imagine their pain,' not knowing that our reality will one day be hers, unless we act now," Rubio said through tears.

  • Rubio was among family members and first responders of mass shooting victims who were invited to testify on the hill.

"We stand for Lexi," she said of her daughter. "And as her voice, we demand action."

  • "We seek a ban on assault rifles and high capacity magazines. We understand that for some reason, to some people, to people with money, the people who fund political campaigns, that guns are more important than children. So at this moment, we ask for progress," she said.
  • "Given the opportunity, Lexi would have made a positive change in this world," said Rubio, who described her daughter as "intelligent, compassionate, athletic."
  • "That opportunity was taken from her. She was taken from us."

Zeneta Everhart, whose son, Zaire, survived the mass shooting in Buffalo, New York, also testified Wednesday, describing in vivid detail what Zaire experienced when a gunman opened fire in what authorities are calling a "racially motivated hate crime."

  • "Let me paint a picture for you: My son Zaire has a hole in the right side of his neck, two on his back and another on his left leg, caused by an exploding bullet from an AR-15," she said.
  • "I want you to picture that exact scenario for one of your children. This should not be your story or mine."
  • "As an elected official, it is your duty to draft legislation that protects Zaire and all of the children and citizens in this country. Common-sense gun laws are not about your personal feelings or beliefs," Everhart said.
  • "I do not feel protected," she added.

Roy Guerrero, a pediatrician who said he's lived in Uvalde his whole life and treated the shooting victims there, urged swift action in response to the mass shooting.

  • "I know I will never forget what I saw that day," he said.
  • "Making sure that our children are safe from guns, that’s the job of politicians and leaders," he said. "We are bleeding out and you are not there."
  • "My oath as a doctor means that I signed up to save lives. I do my job. And I guess it turns out that I am here to plead, to beg, to please, please do yours," he added.

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