UF, Stoneman Douglas alumni return from D.C. with memories, purpose
Stoneman Douglas alumni at UF and other UF students raised about $18,000 so they could bus to the "March For our Lives" rally in Washington D.C.
"It was the most powerful experience in my entire life," Stoneman Douglas Alumni Jaimie Ivers said.
Thousands of people were all marching as one, fighting for tighter gun control.
"I probably walked past a 100,000 people. It was pretty much jammed packed for about a mile straight and then overflowing on to side streets," UF student and trip organizer Brandon Taylor said.
From young to old, these people gathered outside of the white house, shoulder to shoulder.
"I was next to a Douglas Alumni ‘93 and a UF alumni. I cried a lot. It was really intense," Ivers said.
Another Stoneman Douglas alumni Zach Xu said he saw people from school that he hasn't seen in years.
"It was a really encouraging to see almost everyone in our community made a trip to D.C," Xu said.
The day consisted of tears and speeches, but the question is, what's next?
Xu said in order to make a change, students need to educate themselves on gun control before speaking purely from emotions.
"Just really digging deep learning about government learning about how legislature works…finding out statistics that support our argument or theirs because calling for change isn’t going to do much to be honest," Xu said.
These alumni said they want Stoneman Douglas to be remembered as the school that makes an impact on legislature.
The rest of the money raised from the trip will go towards the families who lost their loved ones in the shootings.