‘We do this because of Hana, Tate, Justin, Madisyn’

March With Oxford remembers those lost to gun violence, demands legislative action
By Joseph Goral
Staff Writer
Dozens gathered on a warm Saturday morning at Centennial Park in downtown Oxford to demand gun reform, legislation and remember those in and around Oxford lost to gun violence.
The march was organized by No Future Without Today – a gun violence prevention organization created by survivors of the Oxford High School shooting.
That morning began with sign making – on which attendees wrote what they are speaking up for: gun safety, children, siblings, future generations, victims of the Oxford High School shooting; Hana St. Juliana, Madisyn Baldwin, Justin Shilling and Tate Myre, those killed in the Michigan State shooting and more.
Others brought signs. Their messages included “Gun Violence is the death of U.S.,” “No Place Is Safe,” “Tell me why I was writing my will at 16 instead of my college essay,” among others.
As noon came, speakers addressed the crowd and stated the march’s goals: to uplift the voices of people impacted by gun violence, to celebrate legislative accomplishments, and to call for more proactive and preventative measures to keep kids safe, according to co-founder Dylan Morris.
“I shouldn’t be scared at the grocery store with my siblings, looking for exits and overthinking the ‘what-if-maybes’ if something happened there,” said Rebekah Schuler, an Oxford graduate and Students-Demand-Action advocate.
“We deserve to feel safe in all locations – school, home, playground, splash pads and everywhere we go day-to-day.”

Buck Myre speaks to a crowd gathered to march to Oxford High School at Centennial Park on Saturday, June 22. “We have not got answers for November 30,” Myre said.

Buck Myre, father of Tate Myre, covered mental health and the Oxford shooting. Myre also discussed school safety and support software and strategies to improve mental health and awareness in schools.
Pistol and gun safety instructor Johnathan Gold spoke to the crowd, one of his messages: “This isn’t freedom.”
“Freedom isn’t the right to gun people down in the street because you feel wrong that day,” Gold said. “Freedom is being able to go to a synagogue or a church or a mosque or a splash pad or a party, or just sit on your … front porch without an armed escort.”
Gold also said it is “very clear” that people owning guns is not stopping people from shooting others, and called it ironic that protest signs are not allowed in the capitol building while guns are.
Recent psychology graduate from Michigan State University Maya Manuel shared a message of “joy, hope and compassion” with listeners. Manuel said it is easy to become overwhelmed by grief and challenges, but mentioned “small miracles” that happen everyday to remind listeners of the “beauty and potential of life.”

Pistol and gun safety instructor Johnathan Gold speaks to a crowd gathered to march to Oxford High School at Centennial Park on Saturday, June 22. Photos by Joseph Goral

Manuel spoke about recently becoming an aunt, and said that she was at the march to fight for her nephew’s future. She told the crowd they are not alone when they feel overwhelmed, and thanked listeners for continuing to honor the legacy of those that have been lost.
“We do this because of Hana, Tate, Justin and Madisyn,” Morris said.
The event closed with a group march from Centennial Park to Oxford High School.



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