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ASU senior, Navy reservist urges leaders to prevent gun violence

Posted at 10:15 PM, May 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-25 01:29:50-04

"I remember when I was in high school, when you hear a bang when you hear a fire alarm go off. The first thing on your mind is, 'What's going on, is there a shooter?'”

Those thoughts stick with Arizona State University Senior, Jacob Martinez. And since high school, he's made it his mission to get leaders' attention to prevent gun violence from happening.

"For the last four years that I've even been working on this,” says Martinez. “Fought, cried and begged for them to do something for leaders to do something."

But Tuesday, Martinez pins, yet again, an orange ribbon on his shirt to stand with victims after another mass shooting in Texas.

"Babies. The one that's the one word that I can say, to just put this all together, these kids were babies that were killed,” says Martinez.

"Second, third, fourth graders, students, you know, my brother is age younger than that. Gunned down in school. And then this is something we've seen far too common."

Not only is Martinez a double major in Political Science and Justice Studies, he also joined the Reserves last year, training on how to respond to an active shooter situation.

"I own guns. I'm in the Navy,” Martinez says. “I have a respect for guns. I know how to safely operate them and safely use them."

Understanding both sides, Martinez is organizing a candlelight vigil at the Arizona State Capitol Wednesday night.

"It's really just going to be a chance to come together and to mourn the victims lost. As well as just to demand and say that we need to do something we can't continue to stand by, while nothing happens while kids and people continue to be shot,” Martinez says.