by Linda Mumma

STOCKTON (CBS13) — This weekend’s mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton opened old wounds for the school shooting survivors in Stockton.

Judy Weldon is a member of Cleveland School Remembers and Brady United Against Gun Violence

“After the horrific week we experienced, we needed to gather to increase our demands for our congress and senate to take action now,” Weldon said. “Every time there’s a mass shooting or a man on the street, it brings it back. It pricks the wound.”

She was there 30 years ago when a man walked onto the playground at Cleveland Elementary and shot 34 children, killing five, in what is believed to be the nation’s first mass shooting of school children.

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“Our whole community was traumatized because these were babies. They were six, seven, eight years old and it’s been happening too often,” said Niki Smith with Cleveland School Remembers.

The women were among the group of about 75 people who gathered in Stockton Tuesday along with mayor Michael Tubbs to thank Congressman Jerry McNerny for his support of laws to improve public safety and urge him to return to Congress to get bipartisan support of stricter gun control legislation.

“I would like to see Mitch McConnell take the three bills sitting on his desk, HR 8, 1112 and Senate Bill 42. they’re all gun reform bills. They’re all sitting on his desk and it’s up to him to put these through to the senate,” said San Jose State student Mana Shooshtari said.

It’s an action they say will help people around the country and here at home.

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“I was actually involved in a gun violence incident when I was 13. My family’s car was targeted… and I just remember the bullets passing through the passenger side of the window where I was sitting,” Delta College student Katherine Squire said. “Seeing this grow into a national epidemic has been alarming to me.”

The three bills the group mentioned are designed to close a loophole in background checks when buying weapons at gun shows and through private parties, as well as making them universal.

The House has voted, but the bills have yet to go before the Senate.