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Survivors of ’06 shooting at Seattle Jewish center react to Kansas killings

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SEATTLE — The deadly shooting in Kansas is bringing to life old wounds from the 2006 shooting at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.

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Cheryl Stumbo, who was shot in the abdomen at point-blank range in the 2006 shooting at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle, says last weekend’s shooting in Kansas brought back painful memories for her. (Photo: KCPQ-TV)

Naveed Haq stormed the building in Belltown; he shot six people and killed one.

Cheryl Stumbo was shot in the abdomen at point-blank range. She has gone through more than 20 surgeries and therapy for post traumatic stress.

Last weekend’s shooting brought back painful memories for her.

“This one just really, it feels like somebody took a shovel and just carved out my middle and left me hollow,” said Stumbo.

Like a bad dream, the pictures from Kansas City now haunts the 2006 shooting survivors in Seattle’s own Jewish community.

“It felt like yesterday,” said Stumbo. “Especially when I heard the man’s background and I heard he was with the KKK and that he was in prison for firearms violations. I thought, why did he have access to guns, how did he have access to guns?”

Celie Brown now chairs the board at the Jewish Federation. She says the shooting in Kansas only brings back a tidal wave of emotions.

“It’s a hate crime, this man was looking for a Jew to kill,” said Brown.

Haq is serving a life sentence in prison after he was convicted in the 2006 shooting rampage.

Years later, Stumbo now fights to tighten gun-control laws and strengthen background checks for all firearms sales.

“Really pushing our legislators hard, and now taking it to the voters in the form of a ballot initiative to do something about the fact that 33 people in America die everyday from gun violence, and yet our politicians aren’t doing anything about it,” Stumbo said.

The Jewish Federation won’t say exactly how they’re enhancing security but there is at minimum a heightened awareness.

The sole fatality in the 2006 shooting, Pam Waechter, is remembered with a memorial each year.

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41 comments

  • El Gato

    Ms Strumbo doesn't realize that she is being lied to by the media. Maybe 33 persons per day are killed by guns, but there are many more lives saved by citizens being armed. This is not reported. Also not reported are the murders which are committed using automobiles. A study long ago by Harvard University concluded that fully 10% of auto fatalities are on purpose.
    I empathize with Ms Strumbo in her situation, but people in the US have got to realize that life is not all sweetness and rainbows.

  • American Patriot

    Ms. Stumbo also seems to focus on universal background checks for some reason. What she alludes to is that the man who shot her and the others went though an FBI criminal background check and passed. He acquired his gun legally. Same with the man who shot Gabby Giffords. Same with James Holmes from Aurora Colorado, same with the Navy yard shooter. Her universal background checks wouldn’t have prevented any of those tragedies and they won’t prevent any in the future. She also alludes to the FACT that 33 deaths per day also counts suicides and shootings by police. See they don’t want to differentiate because then the numbers don’t scare people. People like WAGR and Ceasefire use scare tactics, false numbers and the blood of innocent men, women and children to try and get their way. They vilify legal and law abiding gun owners while the law abiding gun owners are disgusted and saddened by these killings as much as anyone else. The gun owners use facts, share their heartbreak and take real steps toward preventing the mentally ill and criminals from getting guns. However…making even more laws for them to break isn’t the answer.

    So to the gun control lobby: Try using actual facts and provide the real details about the events. Let people make informed decisions. Stop lying and manipulating as well as dancing in the blood of innocent victims. You should all be ashamed.

    Gun owners: Keep up the good fight. Defeat them with actual facts, knowledge and the truth. Never give up your rights and especially not for lies and deception.

    My heart goes out to all the victims and the families of HUMAN violence.

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