The Hardest Year of Their Lives

The Hardest Year of Their Lives

Gun Rights

Image: Real America with Jorge Ramos PARKLAND, Fla. – On Feb. 14, 2018, Joaquin Oliver, 17, brought flowers to school for his girlfriend. His father had driven him to buy them the night before, and in the morning, Joaquin awoke, made sure to shower (it was Valentines Day, as he pointed out to his parents), then grabbed his backpack, the flowers and a card. His father drove him to school, and as soon as Joaquin had a chance, he gave them to his girlfriend. Around 2 p.m. that afternoon, a gunman walked into Joaquins high school here with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and killed 17 students and teachers. Joaquin was one of them. This has been the hardest year for Manuel and Patricia Oliver, Joaquins parents. Some people prefer not to talk about the massacre. But Manuel and Patricia choose otherwise. We recently sat on the same couch where, a year ago, they recalled their son’s last moments. Pictures of Guac, as Joaquin was known, are everywhere. Joaquin’s room is just as he left it. His presence is undeniable. The Oliver’s mourning is far from over. When a parent loses a child, especially under such violent circumstances, I suspect it never ends. We have found a new reason to be here, Manuel told me. When you are a parent, everything you do is for your children. We still do everything for our son, but our son is gone. Patricia tells me that it took her a long time to […]

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