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Lewis and Clark high school students organize gun control rally

Local students, parents, former teachers and supporters of gun reform came together at the Spokane Pavilion to speak out against gun violence.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Lewis and Clark high school student and rally organizer Carly Dykes said the idea to host a gun control rally started as a conversation between her and her friend. She said she wasn't sure if many people would show up.

However, contrary to her initial thoughts, a group of near 100 gun reform supporters came together at the Spokane Pavilion Saturday afternoon.

"It means so much," Dykes said. "This is just the start. This shows people still have the fire, still have the passion, still have the motivation to have these conversations and to get action going and hold our local government, Congress and Senate accountable."

Standing in the crowd was Libby Laughary. She said the news of recent mass shootings has made her rethink her experience as a former teacher.

"It makes me so angry every time there’s another shooting," Laughary said. "It's just these children, these children in school. I was a teacher and I think about 'what if that was my classroom? What if those were my kids or my grandkids?' Something has to be done about guns in this country.” 

During the rally, students and parents took the microphone to share testimonies and call for change in gun control and regulation.

Attendees said now is the time to stop gun violence from becoming normalized.

"The exception should be gun violence, it should not be the status quo," Gabriel Kelly, a Lewis and Clark senior said. 

Kelly said he helped organized a walkout at L&C to stand in solidarity with those directly affected by the recent gun violence attacks. He said Spokane can be a part of a greater movement to gun reform.

“Local communities do have a voice, Spokane is not just another city in the wind," Kelly said. "We are important and we can make a change.” 

Kelly is getting ready to graduate, but has a younger brother going into high school. 

He said he’s going to keep fighting for this cause so his brother can feel safe and make it through to his own graduation without fear of tragedy. 

This weekend, Kelly said he will be going to Washington D.C. with students to  demand action and continue advocating for gun control. 

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