Parkland victim’s father pens heartbreaking Twitter thread marking his daughter’s birthday

The father of a teenager who was killed in the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida earlier this year wrote a heartbreaking Twitter thread on Friday to mark what would have been his daughter’s 15th birthday.

Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jamie was killed in the Parkland shooting, has also launched “Orange Ribbons for Jamie,” a non-profit that supports causes that his daughter cared about—including dancing, fighting bullying, and helping children with special needs—and gun safety reforms. The non-profit has raised nearly $150,000 in donations on GoFundMe.

On Friday, Guttenberg wrote an emotional series of tweets remembering his daughter.

“HAPPY BIRTHDAY BABY GIRL!!! Today, Jaime should be turning 15. I should be taking her for her drivers permit. Her family and her friends should be celebrating with her. TODAY, JAIME IS STILL 14. SHE WILL BE 14 FOREVER. Because of gun violence, we will not be celebrating her birthday,”  he wrote in a series of tweets. “Instead, we are broken, crying and mourning. Today, I am thinking of all of the things that I wish I could be doing with you, some as simple as watching our favorite TV shows. Today, I am thinking about the fact that I will never see you dance again, never see you graduate, or never get to fulfill a lifelong dream of mine since that day on July 13, 2003 when I laid eyes on you, and that is to walk you down the isle at your wedding. Today, I am thinking of the job that you will never work at or the grandchildren that I will never meet.”

In the thread, which garnered thousands of retweets, likes and and outpouring of support from people on Twitter, Guttenberg also posted a video that begins with a heartbeat he recorded before she was born.

Guttenberg has become a vocal gun reform advocate in the wake of his daughter’s death and met with several legislators about “common-sense, nonpartisan laws,” according to the Miami New Times. Last month, Guttenberg wrote a Twitter thread on Father’s Day asking for people to “vote orange” in elections, or vote for candidates who support gun reform.

During a town hall hosted by CNN after the shooting, Guttenberg also clashed with Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fl.) while wearing an orange ribbon from the non-profit set up in his daughter’s honor.

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Andrew Wyrich

Andrew Wyrich

Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).