Ellen DeGeneres gave two Parkland shooting survivors a platform on her show, March 22, to explain just why it’s vital that they participate in this weekend’s March on Washington. Watch their powerful explanations.
Ellen DeGeneres, 60, is behind the Parkland Florida students who survived the mass shooting that killed 17 of their classmates on February 16, 2018. Delaney Tarr, 17, and Sam Zeif, 18, joined The Ellen DeGeneres show on March 22, to explain the impact they plan to have on Washington when they join their fellow student survivors and other supporters during the March for Our Lives Event. The event, which has been subject to worldwide attention, will be held on March 24 10 AM in Washington, D.C., as well as other cities across the U.S, including NYC, Los Angeles, Boston and Chicago.
During their discussion with Ellen, Zeif became emotional when he remembered his best friend Joaquin Oliver, 17, who lost his life during the tragedy. Oliver is a key reason Zeif is fighting so hard for gun control. Zeif recalled a quote that Oliver’s father told his father. He said, “The difference between me and you [Zeif’s father] in this fight, is that you don’t have the fear anymore.” Zeif explained, “My dad still has four kids, Joaquin’s father doesn’t, so that’s why he has this strength.”
Delaney Tarr spoke about the March For Our Lives rally and how it will be a display of unity, as well as an opportunity for them to the students and everyone else, to be heard. “This march for us, it’s this display of unity amongst everyone, because everybody is uniting under this cause… It’s more than that,” she said. “It’s a chance to not be ignored, because when there are hundreds of thousands of people marching on Washington saying, “Do something,” it’s kind of hard to ignore that… That’s our goal here, to have that loud and clear voice.”
Both students also revealed that they have returned to Marjory Douglas Stoneman High School” since the deadly shooting, because it was a “necessary thing to do.” — They needed to feel like normal teenagers again, even if it were only “for a few fleeting seconds,” Tarr said.
However, things are much different now. Not only are they missing 17 of their classmates, but they still continue to live in fear. When a fire alarm rings, when a book drops, when someone knocks at the classroom door, Tarr and Zeif explained that the noises send them into a “panic mode.” When something that used to be so normal happens, “there’s that moment where I think, ‘school shooter,'” she admitted, adding, “Even if that isn’t necessarily logical, it’s still the thought process [now].”