GLEN ELLYN – Hundreds of people are expected to march from Abraham Lincoln Elementary School to Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn on March 24, demanding action following the Valentine's Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., that killed 17 people.
The march is part of the national “March for Our Lives” protest against gun violence in schools. The march will start at 10 a.m at Lincoln Elementary School, 380 Greenfield Ave., and proceed to Glenbard West at 670 Crescent Blvd.
Those who participate are encouraged to arrive early since parking may be a problem. Local organizer Leroy Boeckelman of Glen Ellyn said he expects at least 500 people to participate in the march. The march also is supported by the local chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
"We really need to do something to support those wonderful kids in Florida," Boeckelman said. "And also, I think we need to send a message to our legislators that we need to do something. And I think we need to also send a message to our kids here in Glen Ellyn that we're supporting them."
Boeckelman said he would like to see a ban on the sale of assault weapons, along with raising the minimum age to buy a gun to 21. He also would like to see universal background checks.
"Those things to me are very easy," he said. "Why can't we do them?"
Speakers will include students from Glenbard West and Glenbard South high schools, along with Hadiya Afzal, who grew up in Glen Ellyn and ran for the Democratic nomination for DuPage County Board District 4 in the March 20 primary election.
Boeckelman invited anyone who wants to march to participate in the event.
"It's completely open," he said. "We're encouraging people to come march to show their support."
He was happy to see young people trying to make their voices heard following the Feb. 14 shooting in Parkland, Fla.
"I have a lot of confidence and faith in the new generation," Boeckelman said. "I think they're going to do something."
If you go
WHAT: March for Our Lives protest against gun violence
WHEN: 10 a.m. March 24
WHERE: Abraham Lincoln Elementary School, 380 Greenfield Ave., Glen Ellyn, to Glenbard West High School, 670 Crescent Blvd., Glen Ellyn