Local parents react to Texas school shooting

WARWICK, R.I. (WLNE) – As the entire nation mourns for the families who lost loved ones Tuesday after a gunman opened fire at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.

An 18-year-old gunman shot and killed 19 children and two adults at Robb Elementary School, marking the 27th school shooting already this year. Parents across the country, including in Rhode Island, have been left worrying about their children’s safety and pleading for change.

Parents at the E.T. Wyman Elementary School in Warwick were in shock after Tuesday’s tragedy in Texas.

“To think about what  those families are going through… and deal with losing their children. And to know that this just keeps happening,” said Timothy Carlone, a father with kids in 2nd and 4th grade at E.T. Wyman.

Tuesday’s shooting is the deadliest school shooting in the United States since Sandy Hook in 2012, leaving local parents in fear as they sent their own children off to school.

“I have to try to balance the idea that these are rare occurrences, with the reality that they’re not,” Carlone said.

Parents are now for change at a local, state, and national level to invoke policies controlling guns, and securing schools.

“Send money to the school systems. Stop these people from getting into schools and killing these innocent kids,” said Frank Gauthier, whose granddaughter is in 2nd grade at E.T. Wyman Elementary School.

In the wake of the shooting, police departments across Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts boosted police presence at schools on Wednesday, as a precaution. But the idea is something parents believe needs to become permanent.

“Put law enforcement, at least one officer at each school. Outside the perimeter of the school,” Gauthier said.

The nation continues to hold the families of the victims in Uvalde in their thoughts but Carlone insisted more needs to be done.

“Thoughts and prayers, sure,” Carlone said. “But we need these policies to change, we need these laws to change. We need accountability.”

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