Michigan State University student with painful memories of Sandy Hook massacre speaks out

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Thursday, February 16, 2023
MSU student with painful memories of Sandy Hook massacre speaks out
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A Michigan State University student who was on campus during Monday's deadly shooting also has painful memories of the Sandy Hook massacre. Sandra Bookman has the story.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- A Michigan State University student who was on campus during Monday's deadly shooting also has painful personal memories of the Sandy Hook massacre.

Jaqueline Matthews, 21, is originally from Newtown, Connecticut.

She was in 6th grade when the shooting happened in 2012 and attended an intermediate school nearby.

She is currently majoring in international law at MSU.

"I don't ever think you ever get over something so traumatic or so tragic, even if it's not in your community," she said. "I think things like this, people feel and it never really goes away."

Note: This story has been updated to correct the fact that Jaqueline Matthews was not a student at Sandy Hook Elementary school when a mass shooting occurred there in 2012. She attended a nearby intermediate school at the time.

Matthews suffers from a PTSD fracture in her back which she said occurred as the Sandy Hook massacre was happening.

Joe Torres has more on Jaqueline Matthews' experience:

Joe Torres speaks with Michigan State student Jacqueline Matthews, who was on campus during the shooting and who has painful memories of the Sandy Hook massacre.

Matthews said she almost never talks about what happened at Sandy Hook on that dark day, but as she watched the carnage and chaos from her window on the MSU campus Monday night, she couldn't stay silent.

Matthews posted on TikTok to express her frustration and concern for the communities.

"I never talk about that topic, but I felt the need to post that video, I was sitting with my roommate, and we were talking about how out of hand this is, and how it's not OK," Matthews said. "Even the kids form Sandy Hook/Newtown, the kids from Stoneman Douglas, their lives don't stop when these things happen. The fact that the odds of me being in both of those places for two mass shootings, is unfortunately, not as unlikely as it is, for other people as well. I think that's why I felt the need to make the video to bring awareness to the fact that, enough is enough. It just needs to end."

Matthews said she is done being scared of the conversation.

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Anchor Joe Torres speaks with Stefanie Feldman, the deputy assistant to the president and senior advisor to the domestic policy advisor.

In fact, according to the Gun Violence Archive, the number of mass shootings in the United States has nearly tripled in the last decade.

Matthews said she is willing to do her part to help put an end to it.

"It's been put in my face too many times, to the point where being scared is no longer an option," Matthews said.

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Police in New Jersey say they were notified by authorities in Michigan. Morgan Norwood reports.

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