HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - Ninteen students and two adults were tragically killed during a mass shooting at a Texas elementary school Tuesday.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said the gunman, an 18-year-old man, was killed at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, which is about 85 miles west of San Antonio. Abbott said the Uvalde High School student shot his grandmother before going into the school.
As the country mourns more lives lost to senseless gun violence, politicians and other authorities throughout Virginia, Hampton Roads and North Carolina are reacting to the tragedy. You can read what they had to say about the shooting below:
Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin
Suzanne and I are devastated at the incomprehensible and tragic news out of Texas. We are praying for the community of Uvalde and the families who lost their children and loved ones to this senseless attack.
Gov. Youngkin has ordered that starting Tuesday and until sunset on May 28, all U.S. flags and Virginia flags are to be flown at half-staff over the state Capitol and all local, state and federal buildings and grounds in the state of Virginia out of respect for and in memory of the victims.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.)
We have a deep sickness in this country. We cannot accept it as normal. I’m not going to stop pushing for legislation to make our communities safer. https://t.co/4Y6kavXj6d— Tim Kaine (@timkaine) May 24, 2022
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.)
My heart is with all those affected by the shooting in Uvalde. There are no words to express the magnitude of this tragedy. Gun violence is taking far too many lives. Congress must act.— Mark Warner (@MarkWarner) May 24, 2022
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper
What a devastating and unspeakable tragedy at a Texas Elementary School where at least 14 students were killed by a shooter. Our hearts are heavy for their loved ones and the community.— Governor Roy Cooper (@NC_Governor) May 24, 2022
Virginia Beach City Councilman Aaron Rouse
I don’t have the words, just the pain.Another senseless tragic mass shooting. 14 babies and their teacher gunned down. #Uvalde— Aaron Rouse (@AaronRouseVaBch) May 24, 2022
Norfolk Commonwealth's Attorney Ramin Fatehi
How many more children do we have to lose in mass shootings before we stanch the flood of guns? How many? https://t.co/EBOESXzoPB— Ramin Fatehi (@fatehinorfolk) May 24, 2022
Norfolk Police Department
Hold your children tight. Give them a hug and a kiss. And pray for the students, staff, and families of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. https://t.co/KVesC4mxdS— Norfolk Police Dept (@NorfolkPD) May 24, 2022
Jim Redick, Director of Emergency Preparedness & Response for the City of Norfolk
I feel the need to re-phrase my original post. "Unfortunate incident" does not come close to defining these active threat occurrences or how I feel about them. They are utterly horrific. Tragic. Heartbreaking. I am angry and grieve for all involved. https://t.co/SXgizEeZD3— Jim Redick (@JimRedick) May 24, 2022
Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.)
My heart is broken for the entire Uvalde community. Parents send their children to school with the basic expectation that they will come home safe at the end of the day. The Uvalde community sadly joins an unfortunately long list of other communities across our country to face such unspeakable atrocities — and less than two weeks since the horrific mass shooting in Buffalo. Yet not one new federal law has been enacted in response to any of those tragedies in order to prevent another.
Too many politicians will offer up thoughts and prayers but will take no meaningful action. I refuse to accept this as the status quo. Look at the evidence. The United States is not an outlier for individuals suffering from mental illness. We are an outlier for mass shootings. Still we refuse to address the common denominator in all of these tragedies — guns.
Since Democrats retook the majority in 2019, the House of Representatives has passed meaningful gun safety reforms. Sadly, there remain too many in the Senate who still refuse to pass legislation to address this national crisis. This latest tragedy must be the last. I remain committed to enacting comprehensive gun safety reform and I hope my colleagues will finally do something to help end this senseless violence.
This story will continue to be updated as more reactions come in.