Sandy Hook Promise Vows to Fight Gun Violence

(NECN: Brian  Burnell) - "Our hearts are broken; our spirit is not."

Nelba Marquez-Greene read the first words of the Sandy Hook Promise. Her six-year-old daughter Ana was one of the 20 children killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings one month ago.  

Sandy Hook Promise has been formed by people in Newtown, Conn., where it happened, and it has a simple yet complicated goal: Make sure it never happens again. Victims’ families who have joined the effort to start a national dialogue shared their pain.

"On Friday, Dec. 14, I put two children on the bus and only one came home,” Marquez-Greene said. “I pray that no mother, father, grandparent or caregiver of children ever have to go through this pain."

"I still find myself reaching for Dylan's hand to walk through a parking lot or expecting him to crawl into bed beside me for early-morning cuddles before we get ready for school,” said Nicole Hockley. “It's still hard to believe he's gone."

Their goal is to turn this tragedy into a moment of transformation for the entire nation. They want to prevent massacres like Sandy Hook, Columbine, Aurora and others by forging a discussion on public safety, gun control and mental health.  

Avielle Richman's parents started the Avielle Foundation to focus on the latter.

"It is our hope to honor our beautiful Avielle and all others who have fallen to such senseless, senseless violence,” said Jeremy Richman.

Gun control is the hot-button issue and the group is doing its best to remain neutral, saying it wants everyone's voice heard without rancor. But they also recognized neutrality may not always be a practical policy.

"There's going to become a moment in time when we are going to take those positions, and then it’s our intent for those who choose to get behind those positions and move forward and put that change in place,” said Tim Makris.

The NRA came out as recently as this past weekend saying it believes it has enough support in Congress to leave things as they are in the wake of Sandy Hook.  Conn. Senator Chris Murphy said they're wrong.

"The NRA's fundamentally out of step with where this country is after Sandy Hook and they're frankly out of step with where their own members and gun owners are,” Murphy said. “Gun owners across this county don't think you have to have 100-round magazines."

That's the debate Sandy Hook Promise is wading into with the hope

"Love wins,” Marquez-Greene said. “Love wins in Newtown and may love win in America."

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