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 News 4 Tucson giving away 'Remember 1.8.11' bracelets today

2 years ago

News 4 Tucson giving away 'Remember 1.8.11' bracelets today

TUCSON - To commemorate the one-year anniversary of the January 8, 2011 tragedy, News 4 Tucson is giving away white "Remember 1.8.11" wristbands today for free.

The "Livestrong"-style bracelets were originally created by students at Ironwood Ridge High School to raise money for the various funds established for victims of the January 8 tragedy. Earlier this year, students raised over $40,000 from the sale of the bracelets.

You can pick up your "Remember 1.8.11" bracelet today at the KVOA News 4 Tucson Studios, located at 209 W. Elm St., while supplies last. Bracelets will be given away from the front desk until 5:30 p.m. today.

See below for a map to the News 4 Tucson Studios.

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2 years ago

Triumph Over Tragedy: Unbreakable bond

TUCSON - The morning of January 8th, two strangers forged an unbreakable bond.

Nancy Bowman, an off-duty nurse and Vickie Stubbs, an accountant.

When shots rang out, Nancy's husband ran toward the scene and the women were drawn together.

Vickie was in the Safeway, looking for bird food. Nancy was there, in search of brussel sprouts.

Nancy remembers the moment when she, first, heard the shots.

"That sound... that bang, bang, bang, bang was the furthest thing from my mind that it was gunshots. It had to be a car backfiring," Nancy thought.

She looked around and her husband, Dr. David Bowman was already gone.

Vickie was there.

Vickie remembered Nancy saying "'I'm a nurse. I can help.'"

She said to Nancy, "let's go."

For the next 10-minutes or so, they worked together on Judge John Roll.

Nancy says, "I'm sure I was probably shouting orders to various people, and I know my husband was directing everyone to where they needed to be... and who's hand needed to be where."

Vickie didn't feeling like she was being ordered around at all. She felt like Nancy was leading her, saying "She made me feel like I could do it. That it was okay. That there was something to do... and that it would be helpful."

For what seemed an eternity, they tried to save Judge John Roll, taking turns with CPR.

Nancy remembers no chaos, just the sounds of people taking care of other people.

Eventually, Nancy and Vickie split up and lost sight of each other. They didn't reconnect until Judge Roll's funeral, six days later.

Nancy recalls looking up and thinking "'I know exactly who you are.'"

Since that day, they've made a point to get together for dinners. They try not to talk too much about the shooting, but will never forget it.

Vickie says, "Nancy is an angel. She was meant to be there that day to save people."

Nancy says, "There were a lot of people on the periphery who were just spectators and Vickie just said 'tell me what to do. I'll do it.' So, I have a lot of admiration for (her.)"

To make a difference, since January 8th, Nancy has focused on gun regulation, and helping the mentally ill.

Vickie tells people, every day, to live in the moment.

You don't know when it's going to change.

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2 years ago

List of events being held this weekend in memory of Jan. 8

TUCSON - Dozens of events scheduled for this weekend will bring the community together to remember and honor the victims of the January 8 tragedy in Tucson. Here is a list of them:

Friday, January 6:

-Peaceful Wishes, 11:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

"As the anniversary of January 8th approaches, International School for Peace searched for a way to commemorate the day without focusing on fear and negativity and in a way our preschoolers could participate. Our Peaceful Wishes event will be on January 6, 2012, at 11:30 am at the preschool playground."

More info:
http://www.rememberingjanuary8.org/events/january-6th/

- Gabrielle Giffords Family Assistance Center Open House, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
3003 S. Country Club Road, Tucson, AZ
Contact: Bill Carnegie, CEO
Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona
(520) 622-0525 ext. 214

Saturday, January 7:

-BEYOND, a coalition started by extended members of Gabe Zimmerman's family, is hosting dozens of hikes, walks, bike rides and other events on Saturday, January 7 around town.

Some of the events include a health and wellness fair at Tucson Medical Center, "Remember Tucson," a 5K Fun Run to benefit the Arizona Homicide Survivor's Fund, a hike of the newly-named Davidson Canyon Gabe Zimmerman Memorial Trailhead, and many more.

For a complete list of events, visit:

http://www.beyond-tucson.org/events/

Sunday, January 8:

-A Day of Kindness at the Children's Museum Tucson, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

"Ben's Bells invites families to gather to sign the Kindness Contract, to paint Kindness Coins and to hang Kindness Wishes in the trees at the Museum. The Museum will serve as a gathering point for families to celebrate the kindness in our community."

Location: Children's Museum Tucson
Contact: 520-792-9985 (Children's Museum), 520-628-2829 (Ben's Bells)

-Community-wide Ringing of Bells, 10:11 a.m.

From rememberingjanuary8.org:

"On January 8, 2012 at 10:11am, we are asking the entire community to ring a bell in memory of those lost and injured. Please join your friends, neighbors and our community in honoring the victims and survivors of that heartbreaking morning by ringing a bell at 10:11 am."

- Remembering January 8, 2011: Hurting, Healing, Hoping, 10:15 a.m.

Rev. Dr. John Kitagawa will lead a conversation for the community to remember those lost and injured and share reflections of the time since the tragedy.

Location: St. Philip's In The Hills Episcopal Church, 4440 N. Campbell Ave. at River Road, Tucson, AZ 85718
Contact: Diane Wilson at dlwilson57@earthlink.net

- Journey from Mental Illness to Mental Health, 10:45 a.m. to noon

St. Francis in the Foothills is offering a class discussing mental health that is open to the public. Members from the national Alliance on Mental Illness will be presenting information.

Location: St. Francis in the Foothills, 4625 E. River Rd (River west of Swan), Tucson, Arizona

- "We Remember, We Celebrate, We Believe" Interfaith Service, 1 p.m.

Members of all faiths are invited to this service consisting of prayer, music, reflections, dance and participation. The service will include Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Baha'i and Sikh traditions of prayer.

Location: St. Augustine Cathedral, 192 S. Stone Avenue, Tucson, Arizona

- Reflections: Honoring the lives of January 8 shooting victims, 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

A series of speakers will reflect on the lives of the six people who died on January 8, as well as the survivors and citizen heroes of that day. This event is being presented by the Fund for Civility, Respect and Understanding.

Tickets are free and may be picked up at the UA Centennial Hall box office, The Community Foundation for Southern Arizona, 2250 E. Broadway and Pima Council on Aging 8467 E. Broadway.

-Moving Forward, 3 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.

The Northwest Fire District Interagency Corps of Chaplains, along with multi-agency Honor Guard, Pipes and Drummers will honor all public safety and public service personnel at this event.

"All Uniformed Personnel, Dispatch, Support Staff, Hospital Staff, Public Servants, retirees, their families, and guests are invited to this ecumenical service to honor all public safety personnel and public servants who have dedicated their lives to our community at large."

Where: Oro Valley Church of the Nazarene
Address: 500 W. Calle Concordia

-Remembering January 8 Candlelight Vigil, 6:30 p.m.

"The tragic shootings occurring on January 8, 2011 shocked our community, our state and our nation. Our community responded by coming together and providing support, strength and compassion. The Remembering January 8th Candlelight Vigil will honor the victims and survivors of that heartbreaking day.

"Community members are encouraged to attend and show their support for the families of victims and the survivors. Those attending are asked not to bring candles. Glowsticks will be provided at the vigil to all those in attendance."

The Tucson Symphony Orchestra will perform and confirmed speakers include:

Honorable Jonathan Rothschild, Mayor, City of Tucson

Dr. Peter, Rhee, Chief, Division of Trauma, Critical Care and Emergency Surgery, The University of Arizona Medical Center

Mark Kelly, Captain, USN (Retired) Spouse, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords
The emcee for the evening will be Ron Barber, survivor and founder of the Fund for Civility, Respect and Understanding.

The office of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords confirms that she will also be in attendance.

Location: University of Arizona Mall
For more information contact Daniel J. Benavidez at (520) 331-4989.

- Shining the Light of Hope and Peace, 6:30 p.m.
The Tucson community is invited to a special evening service of songs, prayer and healing.

Description: The entire Tucson community is invited to attend a special evening service of songs, prayer and healing.

Location: Northminster Presbyterian Church, 2450 East Fort Lowell Road, Tucson, Arizona
Contact: 520-327-7121, ext. 229

For more information on all the Sunday events, visit:

http://www.rememberingjanuary8.org

2 years ago

Triumph Over Tragedy - Hundreds of Jan. 8 tributes safely archived

TUCSON - After the January 8 shootings, hundreds of people left items at several memorial shrines around town - symbols of their love and caring. These were special places, where people could go, to feel connected.

They came out at all hours of the day and night, from all over the state and nation. Whether they knew the victims or not, it was a way for people to connect at a time when we all felt disconnected.

The memorials became the symbol of our community's love and caring, and a testament that as a community, we were better than the horrific act that had been committed.

One of those who came out was Chrystal Carpenter. Weeks later, she would be back out to help collect and store all the mementos.

"I had come to UMC as a regular community member, to light candles and so forth," Chrystal said. "So when I got asked to assist with consultation and moving the items, it was emotional, but at the same time, you had to do your job and make sure that you're going to keep these materials safe, so I kind of had a disconnect for a little while, but if you go back and look at the materials, it's very touching, and it impacted all of us."

Chrystal's job as a congressional archivist for the University of Arizona was to make sure that nothing was left behind, as all the materials were boxed and moved into a climate-controlled storage unit - all 300 boxes-worth.

"It's important for the community, and I think it's also important to remember our recent past going into the future, hopefully to be able to make a positive impact on the world, and also be able to have people never forget this - the horribleness, but also the hope that comes from that," she said.

The question now: what will become of all this material?

"The truth is, we don't really know," says Stephen Brigham, Director of Capital Planning & Projects at University Medical Center. "Whether it's the hospital, the Safeway store, or the congresswoman's office, I think the one agreement we have is that we want this to be a community effort. So we're looking to a group that's been facilitated by Ron Barber and Cox Communications to help with some of the memorial planning, to really talk about the basics of what is a memorial? What is a tribute? What is a commemoration?"

Sitting in a climate controlled locker, the boxes are safe, but Brigham believes it's more important for them to be accessible to the public.

"I think we have a fairly immediate concern that we want these out of the storage locker and into a larger space, unpack them again, let other people see them. Because, right now, it's hard for these to see. Your presence here, videotaping these and showing others what these look like, even though it's a small representation, I think helps remind people what's here in boxes," Brigham said. "It was never intended to be permanent, but because of the emotion and compassion that are shown in these, there are perhaps permanent ideas and emotions we need to be reminded of."

Some of the most poignant material is from schoolchildren, confused by the events of January 8, but hopeful, as only children can be.

Like one from Tabitha, a little girl from Mrs. Tatum's 3rd grade class at Sahuarita Intermediate School.

"This letter is signed by Tabitha, and she says she's a student of Arizona, that's how she signs off," Brigham says. "This one says, ‘your friend,' a lot of them say ‘your friend.' A lot of these students and a lot of the community felt connected to the congresswoman in a very special way, not just because of what happened to her, but I think she's a very special person who connected to a lot of people."

Tune in to News 4 Tucson on Sunday at 5:30 p.m. to watch the complete special: Triumph Over Tragedy - One Year Later.

2 years ago

Triumph Over Tragedy - Two survivors share their stories

TUCSON - Two survivors, standing only inches apart when the Tucson massacre hit, have spent the weeks and months since January measuring that sad event's impact on their lives.

One, a retired executive who shielded his spouse from the gunfire, but took a bullet himself; the other, now a widow, who lost her mate that day. Her wounds have healed, but her heart is slowly mending.

News 4 Tucson's Tom McNamara met them both, and shares their stories:

Angels of hope adorn Mauvy Stoddard's Christmas tree - dozens of them, sent by people she doesn't even know.

But her true angel hangs on the walls of her home: Dory Stoddard, the man who loved her - the man who saved her life.

"Oh, I don't cry nearly as much as I used to," Mauvy says. "Sometimes in the morning, I talk to his pictures, he doesn't answer me, but I talk to him, anyway."

Dory Stoddard: husband, hero, and now in heaven, says Mauvy - a saint to the hundreds of people who've contacted her since.

"He would be shocked that so many people know of him," she says. "I want to be like him, the junior high kids said. And the little junior high girls especially would say 'I want a guy like that.'"

Mauvy herself was shot that day, three times in the leg. Doctors helped heal those wounds, but Mauvy's still working on the emotional healing, "and I think I'm through the worst part of it," she says. "People keep telling me I'm rushing it, well at my age, how much more time do I have? Maybe a long time, maybe not. I want to get through this and be happy and joyful again."

Part of the healing help comes from fellow survivors. In particular, Ken Dorushka. He was shot once in the arm as he flung himself, and his wife, to the ground that day, landing right next to the Stoddards.

"When I retired, this was not on my bucket list of things to have happen to you," Ken says. "I could have gone the rest of my life without ever being shot."

Ken says his wife was greatly traumatized by the event He's still having surgeries to repair his arm wound. But he says what happened has made them stronger, and more giving.

"You stop and wonder, why, why me, Lord. [Like the] Kris Kristofferson song that I love, dearly. What did I ever do to deserve you. But, and then, five months later, our third grandchild was born and gave us renewed meaning, renewed commitment, renewed reason for being," Ken says. "It's probably a cliche, but every day is more precious now than it was before. You don't take any day for granted.

On that now-and-forever-tainted day of January 8, Ken says he's spending this day at church, and at ceremonies, supporting fellow survivors and commemorating the lives of those we lost.

"They've become friends, truly, and we care a lot about all of them," he says. "It's going to be a somber day, that's for sure. It's painful. Every day I say a prayer for each one of the six that aren't with us. It's hard for me to understand and comprehend.

Mauvy says it was tough enough getting through the first holidays without Dory, but her toughest day may be January 8, which she'll spend with her four daughters and their families, "with everybody around the table but him," she says. "And when the 10 of us are together, nine of us now, and usually the guy are on one side of the room and the girls on the other, and I don't hear his voice or his laugh, that's hard."

2 years ago

Triumph Over Tragedy - Green and Zimmerman families speak

With the anniversary of January 8th just days away, we at News 4 Tucson wanted to take a look at how far we've come, how we have moved forward, and how our community is stronger one year later. Here is one story of many that you will see all week leading up to the anniversary. We hope that they inspire you, as much as they have us.

Also, remember to watch our half-hour special, "Triumph over Tragedy", uninterrupted on Sunday, January 8th at 5:30 p.m.

TUCSON - "I call her my beautiful little angel. Every day I talk to her, tell her I love her, and I'm going to see her someday," said Roxanna Green, the mother of Christina-Taylor Green.

If you think John and Roxanna Green, the parents of the youngest victim of January 8th, are going to feel sorry for themselves...think again.

"We're going to go through tough times, we're going to go through good times, but through those tough times if the community ignites...I think we can get through anything," said John Green.

"Our young daughter in a short 9 years, achieved more things than most adults do in a lifetime. So I think it's just a message of hope, getting involved in your community, trying to make a difference," said Roxanna.

That's the idea, moving forward, continuing Christina's legacy. She may have only been 9-years-old, but we could all learn something from her. So full of life, so caring of others around her, and if one person can make a change for the better, after reading how Christina approached every day, then her death is not in vain. That's why the Green's have decided to write a book.

"We just wanted everyone to know our story, her story. It's an inspirational story, it's not a sad story," said Roxanna.

"She's near and dear to our heart. It can be hurtful at times. But again, it's very positive," said John.

"There is nothing about the shootings that changed my perception of this world or the risks in this world and in this country," said Ross Zimmerman, father of Gabe Zimmerman, Giffords Outreach Director who was shot and killed on January 8th. "The only thing that is different is that it didn't dawn on me that it could happen to my family and to me."

Ross Zimmerman, like the Green's, also experienced what most of us never will. He buried his own child, instead of the other way around. Any parent who has experienced this, will say, it's just not supposed to happen that way. But Ross says he has come to terms with that.

Gabe was known as wise beyond his years, a level of maturity and charisma not usually seen in such a young man. His father says he often wants to be more like his son.
And if Tucson and Southern Arizona can be a little more like Gabe was, the world could be a better place.

"I think that it's in our society's enlightened self-interest to try and work together. That if we help each other we help ourselves," said Ross.

With the anniversary of January 8th upon us, Ross hopes we move forward in a positive direction, rather than looking back.

"We want to encourage a day where people get out with each other and do something active engaging and worthwhile together," said Ross.

There's no arguing that January 8th was a horrible, horrible tragedy. It rocked this city, this community, to its core. But if 2 separate families, both who lost their flesh and blood that day, can move on and become stronger for it, then we all must do the same. Because that's what Gabe Zimmerman and Christina-Taylor Green deserve.

"I am really proud of our town and our community. They have really taken us under their wings," said John Green. "We just want to say thank you. It's been an outpouring of support and love since January. We're just really proud. I'm especially proud to be from Tucson," said Roxanna Green.

"I want the behavior of all in the community, all touched by the ripples of this to change for the better too. I want to see change," said Ross Zimmerman.

And that is triumph over tragedy.

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2 years ago

Triumph Over Tragedy - One Year Later

Triumph Over Tragedy - One Year Later airs Sunday, January 8 at 5:30 p.m.

We hear from families of those who died, from those who survived and those who helped in that survival. We hear their hopes for themselves and Tucson moving forward, one year after their lives and the lives of everyone in this community changed forever.

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