Heartbreaking plea of mum whose son died in California shooting
The heartbroken mum of a victim of the Thousand Oaks shooting has begged for tougher gun controls, saying: "No more guns".
Susan Schmidt-Orfanos revealed her son Telemachus Orfanos was a survivor of the Las Vegas shooting in October last year.
But the 27-year-old did not survive the massacre at the Borderline Bar & Grill in California late on Wednesday night.
Mr Orfanos was one of 12 killed by ex-Marine Ian David Long who turned the gun on himself after opening fire at the packed student night.
Just over a year ago Mr Orfanos was at the Route 91 country music festival in Vegas when Stephen Paddock shot 58 people dead.
“My son was in Las Vegas with a lot of his friends and he came home,” said his mum Ms Schmidt-Orfanos.
“He didn’t come home last night, and I don’t want prayers. I don’t want thoughts. I want gun control. I hope to God nobody sends me any more prayers. I want gun control. No more guns.”
California has some of the strictest gun laws in the USA.
Mr Orfanos, a former US Navy sailor, was one of a number of Vegas survivors who met regularly at the Borderline.
His father Marc said: “It’s particularly ironic that after surviving the worst mass shooting in modern history, he went on to be killed in his hometown."
The bar was hosting a country music night for students when Long, 28, burst in with a Glock .45 calibre semi-automatic pistol.
He fired indiscriminately at the dancefloor after killing the security guard outside. The venue was packed with teenagers at the time.
The victims included sheriff’s deputy Ron Helus, who tried to tackle the gunman. Sgt Helus was expected to retire this year.
Long was found dead in the venue.
It earlier emerged that the Afghanistan veteran had been assessed by a mental health specialist in April after police were called to a disturbance at the suburban Los Angeles home he shared with his mother.
The specialist concluded he could not be involuntarily committed for psychiatric observation, but was worried he might have post-traumatic stress disorder.
The 12 victims include 48-year-old Sean Adler, who had recently opened his own coffee shop, realising a long-held dream.
He was working as security and is thought to have been the first killed by Long.
Danny Evans, one of his childhood best friends, told the New York Times that, in high school, Mr Adler “was the guy we all wanted to be: handsome, athletic and kind.”
Cody Coffman, 22, was also killed. Sarah DeSon, 19, said she believed she survived the shooting because of his quick reaction.
She said: “He was protecting everyone. He got up and he just yelled, ‘Everyone, run!’”.
Alaina Housley, 18, Daniel Manrique, Justin Meek, 23 and Noel Sparks were all also killed.
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