Fred Guttenberg, the father Parkland victim, is also the brother of a 9/11 victim.
“9/11 was an American tragedy. Gun violence is a uniquely American tragedy, and I have buried people who I love because of both of them,” he stated.
Guttenberg lost his brother Michael on October 17, 2017 due to health complication stemming from a cancer linked to 9/11. He also lost his daughter Jaime on February 14, 2018 during the Parkland shooting.
“[My brother] spent 16 days at Ground Zero breathing everything in,” said Guttenberg. “That was the hardest thing I’ve ever been through when my brother died. And when he finally was gone it was something that I had a hard time dealing with. I never in a million years thought something a thousand times worse would happen.”
While both tragedies shook the nation, only one resulted in an immediate response from the government.
“What’s really amazing is how, in one of those uniquely distinctly American tragedies, what happened on 9/11, this country took decisive and immediate action. I don’t want to politicize it, saying they did the right thing or the wrong thing. They took action. They did something and we’ve never seen an incident like that again,” said Guttenberg. “Gun violence in America is a uniquely American problem, and it’s being going on for too long. And nothing is being done.”