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Distraught Mother of Jewish Florida Shooting Victim: 'Action, We Need It Now!'

Following the tragedy, U.S. President Donald Trump paid a visit to the Florida community, praising first responders and dodging gun law questions

JTA
The Associated Press
Josefin Dolsten
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Alyssa Alhadeff's funeral program in North Lauderdale, Fla., Friday, Feb. 16, 2018
Alyssa Alhadeff's funeral program in North Lauderdale, Fla., Friday, Feb. 16, 2018Credit: Brynn Anderson/AP
JTA
The Associated Press
Josefin Dolsten

The mother of a 14-year-old Jewish girl killed in the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, has a heartbreaking but powerful message for U.S. President Donald Trump.

Alyssa Alhadeff was among the 17 people shot to death by a lone gunman who entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Wednesday afternoon. At least four other Jews, three students and a teacher, were among the victims.

In an intensely emotional interview with CNN, Lori Alhadeff yelled at the camera and begged Trump to take action.

“The gunman, a crazy person, just walks into the school, breaks down the window of my child’s door and starts shooting, shooting her, and killing her,” Alhadeff said.

“President Trump, you say what can you do? You can stop the guns from getting into these children’s hands. Put metal detectors at every entrance to the schools. What can you do? You can do a lot. This is not fair to our families, that our children go to school and have to get killed. I just spent the last two hours putting the burial arrangements for my daughter’s funeral, who’s 14. President Trump, please do something, do something, action, we need it now.”

Trump visited the Florida community following the shooting, meeting privately with victims and cheering the heroics of first responders.

"I was at the hospital with a lot of parents and they are really thankful for the job you've done," Trump said at the Broward County Sheriff's Office, where he was joined by Gov. Rick Scott, Sen. Marco Rubio and other Florida officials. He added that the young victims were in "really great shape" considering what they have been through.

Speaking directly to the raw emotions of the victims was Rubio, who told Trump, "This is a community and a state that's in deep pain and they want action to make sure this never happens again," to which Trump replied: "You can count on it."

Still, the president made no policy statements. An avid supporter of the National Rifle Association, Trump ignored a shouted question regarding gun laws and failed to mention the renewed debate over gun violence. Trump tweeted earlier Friday that he was "working with Congress on many fronts," offering no further details.

Those who knew Alyssa Alhadeff said she was a mature, laid back girl who loved soccer and made friends easily. She played midfield for the school soccer team, earning newspaper coverage for her achievements on the field.

“She’s the sweetest,” Alhadeff’s grandmother, Vicky Alhadeff, told Miami’s Channel 7 News on Wednesday night. “She’s a big soccer player, very smart, she’s in track. She’s very popular, a very beautiful girl. Oh my God, she’s my life. How could I not love her? She’s my granddaughter.”

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