The day after a former student with an AR-15 killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo returned to his alma mater and gave an emotional speech at a candlelight vigil.
Rizzo, who graduated from Stoneman Douglas in 2007, left the Cubs’ spring training in Arizona on Wednesday. He spoke for a few minutes tonight alongside about two dozen other speakers at the Parkland Amphitheater, in front of a crowd of thousands.
“There are a lot of communities out there that know exactly what we’re going through right now and have to relive these moments again and again,” Rizzo said.
“While I don’t have all the answers, I know that something has to change before this is visited on another community, and another community, and another community.”
Rizzo also, according to ESPN, showed support during other speeches by “rising to his feet several times to join thunderous ovations as Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel and others made empassioned pleas for ‘common sense gun laws.’”
At the amphitheater, 17 four-foot tall angels stood on the stage—one for each victim. They were reportedly given to Parkland by the nearby city of Sunrise which first used them more than five years ago to honor the victims of the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. There have been more than 290 school shootings in the U.S. since 20 children and six adults were killed at Sandy Hook.