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At a music festival last year in Las Vegas, Telemachus Orfanos survived the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history.
Thirteen months later, the Navy veteran was caught in the throes of another massacre at a bar in California. This time, the 27-year-old didn’t survive.
But Orfanos’ mother doesn’t want your thoughts and prayers. Instead, she wants action.
“My son was in Las Vegas with a lot of his friends, and he came home. He didn’t come home last night,” Susan Orfanos told CNN affiliate KABC on Thursday.
“I don’t want prayers. I don’t want thoughts. I want gun control, and I hope to God nobody else sends me any more prayers. I want gun control. No more guns.”
In recent years, right after a mass shooting happens in the United States, some politicians have said it’s not the appropriate time to discuss gun control. Some say it’s too early or too disrespectful to the families of the victims.
But Susan Orfanos couldn’t disagree more.
Even the gunman who killed her son apparently ridiculed America’s tendency to send “thoughts and prayers” to grieving families.
Authorities identified a Facebook post believed to have been made by the shooter around the time of the attack, according to a law enforcement official familiar with the ongoing investigation.
In it, the writer says: “I hope people call me insane… (laughing emojis).. wouldn’t that just be a big ball of irony? Yeah.. I’m insane, but the only thing you people do after these shootings is ‘hopes and prayers’.. or ‘keep you in my thoughts’… every time… and wonder why these keep happening…”