Cedar Valley residents gathering for Orlando victims say "Stop G - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cedar Valley residents gathering for Orlando victims say "Stop Gun Violence"

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Just days after a deadly shooting at an Orlando nightclub that killed 49 people, the nation is still reeling.

Sunday night a gunman opened fire in a gay nightclub in Orlando leaving 49 dead and 53 injured.

The FBI calling this a terror attack. 

The shooter, Omar Mateen killed by the SWAT team, was investigated for possible terror acts in 2013, yet he was still able to legally buy a semi-automatic weapon.

Something that has outraged many, including so many here in the Cedar Valley. A vigil was held in Waterloo Wednesday night to talk about the gun violence. 

"Our legislators have made it so we can buy these mass murder machines. We need to stand up and say, 'enough is enough!'" said a speaker at the vigil.

Several hundred people gathered in Downtown Waterloo to show their support for the victims of Orlando and show their outrage for the gun violence in this country.
 "Did you see the films with the joy on those people that were dancing? Then the next thing they knew, they were blown away. I was like, 'I can't believe this is happening.' Why is it happening? There is no good reason," said Susan Fettkether, a Waterloo resident.

 A senseless act of hatred. The most recent in a line of mass shootings where the common link is the semi-automatic weapons used to gun down dozens of innocent victims. 

Those who gathered at the event say it is time to take semi-automatic weapons off the streets.

"One of the concrete ways in which we can help prevent something like this from happening again, regardless of who the target is, is by making sure we take AR-15's off the market," said Waterloo Human Rights Commission Executive Director, Rev. Abraham Funchess.

Although Eastern Iowa has been fortunate enough to never be faced with a mass shooting, gun violence is still an issue.

"At a time when a 4-year-old on my street, that I live on, can be a victim of a stray bullet," said Chris Schwartz, an openly gay candidate for the Black Hawk Board of Supervisors

"The fact that people are dying because of gun violence should be a concern for everyone, regardless of their station in life, regardless of their ethnic background, or their religious persuasion," said Funchess.

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