ORANGE VILLAGE, Ohio-- Two student survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, were in Northeast Ohio Friday night.
Mandi and Harris Jaffe were in class back on Feb. 14. Mandi said she was in Spanish class when a code red was called. She and her fellow classmates hid in the main office on the first floor.
Harris was in finance class in a building beside Mandi’s. He said he heard the gunshots go off.
Both of them knew several of the students who died.
“At the beginning of the day, our biggest problem was turning in homework or a math quiz. At the end of the day, it was which of our friends were injured, which of them were killed. How are we going to cope with this; how will we go back to school?” Mandi said.
Four months later, the teens traveled to Northeast Ohio to share their stories with their faith community, advocating against gun violence.
The twins spoke Friday night at Temple Emanu El in Orange to an event that was free and open to the public.
“We shouldn’t have to fly out to a new state and speak out against gun violence, but I feel obligated to. Because If I don’t step up and express myself, people are going to keep killing,” said Harris.
The twins also engaged with the temple’s teens in a gun violence advocacy program.
They also encouraged people, young and old, to register to vote.