Watch: Mother of Orlando victim gives emotional plea at DNC
The mother of an Orlando victim gave a moving speech at the DNC urging for gun control in her son’s name.
Mother of Orlando massacre victim Christopher Andrew “Drew” Leinonen gave an emotional speech at the Democratic National Convention last night, calling for common-sense gun control in her son’s name.
Drew was killed alongside his boyfriend – Juan Ramon Guerrero – with some reports suggesting that the pair’s funerals would take place simultaneously.
Christine Leinonen, 49, took the stage in tears with Pulse shooting survivor Brandon Wolf and Drew’s ex-boyfriend Jose Arriagada for support.
Leinonen spoke of her son’s accomplishments, how he won the Anne Frank Award for starting a gay-straight alliance at his high school.
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The crowd erupted into cheers and chants as she mentioned that Drew’s paternal grandparents met at a Japanese internment camp, “so it was in his DNA that love always trumps hate.”
She discussed the day Drew was born, and that she worked as a Michigan state trooper at the time.
“The hospital put my off-duty gun in a safe. I didn’t argue, I know common-sense gun policies save lives… I am glad common-sense gun policy was in place the day Christopher was born, but where was that common sense the day he died?”
Leinonen was at the DNC because she never wants anyone else to ask that question about their child and because her son was a Hillary supporter as well.
The emphasis of her speech was the fact that it took five minutes for a church bell to ring 49 times for the 49 victims of the tragedy, but it only takes one minute for the gun that killed her son to fire 30 rounds.
Last month, a petition to have Drew immortalised as the first LGBT character in a Star Wars film started trending on Twitter.
Grab your tissues and watch the whole heart-wrenching speech below: