Families of gun violence victims gather in Washington for State of Union

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The parents of Hadiya Pendleton were among the guests of Michelle Obama at tonight’s State of the Union address.

They join families affected by gun violence who traveled to Washington D.C for tonight’s speech from all over the country.

Some gathered and spoke on Capitol Hill earlier today.

“I am here today because my daughter never came home,” Hadiya’s mother, Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton said.  “I am here today because she lost her life to gun violence. I am here today because gun violence affected my life, and has affected the rest of my life. No one should feel the way we do.”

Illinois’ Senior Senator Dick Durbin chaired a senate judiciary hearing today on gun violence and is looking for a balance between gun control and the second amendment.

Among those testifying at the hearing was another Chicagoan, Sandra Wotham, whose police officer brother, Thomas, was shot and killed in 2010.

“My brother owned a gun. My father owned a gun. But the fact that they were armed that night didn’t prevent Thomas’ murder,” she said.

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