DENVER (CBS4) – One of Colorado’s most disturbing and harrowing times — the shooting in Aurora at the Century 16 movie theater — marks one year Saturday.
On the eve of the anniversary, survivor Stephen Barton will be speaking out on the issue of gun violence at a public gathering in Denver.
“I was shot with a shotgun in the face, the neck, the chest, the shoulder and arms and hands by about two dozen shotgun pellets, eight of which are still in me,” he told CBS4.
Barton, a Connecticut resident, says he’s lucky. Not lucky he was at the movie theater that night, but lucky to get out alive.
After recovery he wanted to get involved in the issue of gun violence. He now works for Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a national effort spearheaded by the mayors of New York and Boston.
“With this campaign in particular it’s called ‘No More Names.’ The idea is that the level of gun violence that we’re suffering in this country is unacceptable,” Barton said.
A bus traveling across the country with the message “No More Names” on the outside will be parked at the Cherry Creek State Park on Friday as part of a ceremony that is being called a “rememberance event” in connection with the Aurora shooting.
Pro gun advocates said they plan to peacefully attend the event, because of its political overtones.
“If they are doing a news conference and politizing the event, we will be there to give the opposing view. Period. End of sentence,” Dudley Brown, Rocky Mountain Gun Owners executive director, told CBS4 by phone on Thursday. “We wish that they wouldn’t do that, but that’s what they do, and so we have to respond.”
Barton said he knows this is a sensitive issue.
“This is a discussion. It’s an ongoing discussion. We can agree to disagree, but the bottom line is victims should be respected,” Barton said.