Virginia Swimmer Claire Tuggle talks about gun violence in emotional Instagram posts | Tech Reddy
On Saturday, the University of Virginia freshman swimmer and member of the USA Junior team Claire Tuggle He posted an Instagram story discussing gun violence in the wake of the shooting at his school that killed three UVA football players—DeSean Perry, Lavel Davisa Devin Chandler—two other people were injured.
In his post, Tuggle described the depression he and his friends felt after the shooting, and the prevalence of mass shootings in America. Below is his full statement:
These past few days have been filled with tears, comfort, hugs, memories, support and love. I never thought that the school that I loved so much would become something so terrible. The UVA community and UVA athletic community suffered three gunshot wounds. This is a fear that I don’t want anyone to have. Watching some of my closest friends crumble under the weight of losing the people they call their best friends and friends broke my heart in a way I never knew I could. possible. Holding someone in your arms who has just lost their loved one to a senseless act of violence is something no one should experience. My heart doesn’t hurt for their friends that I know, but friends and family members that I don’t know, this is just wrong, wrong. Along with the sadness that came from this event came the realization of how troubling it is that this situation continues in this country without change. Knowing that this is one of 8 mass shootings in the United States that happened in those 48 hours. Knowing that the governor of Virginia is concerned about the big race theory and the NRA, when setting policy will help. in these three innocent boys. Knowing that I will wake up tomorrow and see another mass shooting on the news. The sadness of this tragedy is almost all consuming, but that little part of me that is not filled with sadness and sadness is filled with anger. This should never have happened to these boys, my friends should never have lost the people they call brothers, I should never have held the people I love while they cried in my arms . This is not fair to me, and it is not fair to you. Rest in Peace Lavel, D’Sean and Devin.
Tuggle also spoke to Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin, who said he was “worried about bigoted ideology and the NRA” rather than implementing policies to stop the deaths of Perry, Davis, and Chandler.
Youngkin, who was elected governor in 2021 and will take office in early 2022, has generally been silent on tougher gun control laws, but has focused on the school shootings around the country and calls for more school security and safety plans. During his campaign, he said he would not sign any legislation that curtails Second Amendment rights and plans to change existing gun laws. Despite this, the NRA did not endorse Youngkin in his 2021 campaign, although they endorsed other national candidates for office in Virginia.
“We had a terrible tragedy last night at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, and a life was lost,” Youngkin said in an emailed statement after the shooting in Virginia. “And families have changed forever. And I just ask everybody this morning to lift up those families, the whole community in prayer… And it’s a very sad, scary, scary time.
Earlier this year, the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund ranked Virginia 14th for the strictness of its gun laws, many of which were enacted under former Gov. Ralph Northam.
The shooting occurred in Virginia around 10:30 PM on the night of November 13, 2022, when suspect and former UVA football player Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. is believed to have opened fire. . Perry, Davis, and Chandler were shot and killed, and UVA football player Mike Hollins and another female student (name not released) were injured. Hollins, who was the first to get off the bus when Jones opened fire, was shot in the back after returning to the bus to help other students.
Jones was arrested and taken into custody at 11:24 AM in Henrico County, Virginia — about 80 miles from the Virginia campus. He ended up being held in a protective order for about twelve hours.
Since the shooting, UVA, particularly its athletic community, has made efforts to honor the memories of Perry, Davis, and Chandler. Many of the school’s sports teams wore uniforms with the numbers 1, 15, and 41 (the numbers of the three football players who died) on them. In addition, several Virginia rival schools such as Virginia Tech have shown signs of support for the Cavaliers.
This week, at the 2022 Tennessee Invite, the UVA swimming and diving team wore t-shirts to honor the three athletes. Importantly, Tuggle did not attend this reception, being out of the party due to health related issues. Additionally, at Ohio State’s request, the Virginia Tech swimming and diving team posted a photo with a “Hokies For Hoos” banner in support of UVA.
On Saturday night, there was a memorial service for three Virginia football players. The team’s football game against #23 Coastal Carolina was canceled, their last home game of the season.
One student from Virginia, who was not involved in the swim program, told SwimSwam that the campus was “dark” and a “ghost town,” describing how the group’s reaction slowed down. to shoot that did not arrive days after shooting.