Anger, determination and sorrow overflowed at the funeral for 14-year-old Florida shooting victim Jaime Guttenberg.
Eyewitness Ten News reported that: “Fourteen-year-old Jaime Guttenberg, one of the first victims identified in last week’s horrifying high school gun massacre in Florida, has been laid to rest by family, friends and members of the public at an emotional funeral service over the weekend.”
Ms Guttenberg, who her loved ones say was a talented dancer and passionate volunteer, was one of 17 victims who were last week shot dead, allegedly by teenage gunman Nikolas Cruz – a former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, north west of Fort Lauderdale.
Jaime’s father, Fred Guttenberg, spoke at her funeral, telling mourners that he would be “relentless” in his fight to change gun laws in America.
“This will be my life going forward. We will win,” Mr Guttenberg vowed, adding: “We will be able to safely send our kids to school. This could have been your kid.”
Guttenberg also reportedly expressed outrage at Trump taking to Twitter to politicize the tragedy, using it to distract from his concerns regarding the ongoing Russia investigation which exploded on Friday with the news that Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller’s team had indicted 13 Russians for tampering in the 2016 election.
“You do not have my permission to pull my daughter into the Russia probe, you do have my permission to join me in my fight for public safety,” he reported stated at the funeral.
Multiple other sources cited a longer quote, but Liberals Unite was unable to find corroboration for the exact phrase:
“Trump, you do not have my permission. Please do not use the murder of my daughter to further your agenda to discredit the Russian investigation. My family and I have not even heard from you since this happened. This is not a political problem, it’s a public safety problem. If you want to stand by me to discuss that and effect change in gun violence, then I will stand by your side, but you do not have my permission to use my daughters death to your political benefit regarding Russia in your tweets.”
Fred Guttenberg did post a heart-breaking message on his Facebook profile on Saturday, which read:
“My heart is broken. Yesterday, Jennifer Bloom Guttenberg and I lost our baby girl to a violent shooting at her school. We lost our daughter and my son Jesse Guttenberg lost his sister. I am broken as I write this trying to figure out how my family get’s through this. We appreciate all of the calls and messages and we apologize for not reacting to everyone individually. Jen and I will be figuring things out today and so we ask that you respect out privacy. We will be getting messages out later regarding visitation. Hugs to all and hold your children tight.”
The Orlando Sentinel reported that: “The Guttenberg family was already mired in tragedy. Her uncle, Dr. Michael Guttenberg, who was assigned to the World Trade Center site on 9-11 when terrorists attacked the United States and worked in the debris from the towers afterward, died of pancreatic cancer linked to airborne toxins at Ground Zero in October.”
Fred Guttenberg’s sister, Abbie Youkilis, posted a message on her Facebook page as well, responding to the death of her brother Michael as well as expressing outrage at niece Jaime’s tragic death.
Particularly noteworthy portions of her post included the following:
We are not safe. This weekend we will bury my niece. Her name is Jaime Guttenberg and she was the 14 year-old daughter of my brother Fred and sister-in-law Jen. She was Jesse’s younger sister. Yesterday, she was murdered by a gun at her high school in Parkland Florida.
Fred and Jen are the world’s most loving and over-protective parents but they could not protect Jaime from the sickness that has gripped our country. Unless we change, nobody can protect us. My friends and fellow citizens, your guns are not protecting you. Your guns are killing our kids.
Why is your hunting hobby more important than my niece’s life? Don’t you see that your “second amendment” rights have been twisted and distorted beyond any rational interpretation? Why should my niece have been sacrificed at the altar of your “freedoms?” Why don’t you trust our police to protect us from crime? Don’t you realize that mental illness has been and always will be a part of the human condition and that weapons of war should not be available to those among us who dream of mayhem and death? Don’t you see the blood on all of our hands?
She concluded her emotional plea, writing:
My family does not want your hopes and prayers. We want your action. Join us in fighting the NRA. Join us in deposing any politician who cares more about campaign contributions than my beautiful Jaime. Join us in supporting leaders who will bravely fight for our children’s lives.
Don’t tell me not to politicize this. Jaime would want me to. This is political and now this is personal. If not now, when? If not us, who? If we don’t finally ACT, the sickness of gun violence will kill us all.