Fathers of 2 students killed in Parkland are asking everyone to remember the victims on Feb. 14

Published: Updated:
Tony Maltalto’s daughter Gina was one of the 17 victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting on Feb. 14, 2018. (WINK News)

February 14, 2018.

A day many celebrated Valentine’s Day with their loved ones. But, that wasn’t the case for 17 families.

A day most people in Parkland and across the country still can’t fully understand.

A day parents like Tony Maltalto can still hardly bring himself to talk about.

“For everyone else, Feb. 14 is a special day,” Maltalto said. “Unfortunately for us, we’re reminded of losing our daughter Gina every day of the year.”

MORE: One year since Parkland; How has security at Southwest Florida schools changed

Fourteen-year-old Gina, one of the 17 people shot and killed last year inside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

“Gina was an amazing kid,” Maltalto said. “Wonderful daughter, great big sister. She was an excellent student.”

Tom Hoyer is another dad still trying to come to terms with the loss of his son, 15-year-old Luke was also killed in the mass shooting.

“Feb. 13 of last year, I never thought it would happen to me,” Hoyer said. “I think most people don’t think it could happen to them.”

But even in the midst of this undeniable tragedy, these two dads say there’s still some good.

MORE: ‘I can’t bring Alyssa back’: Grieving Parkland mom fights on

The pointed to better school safety and amazing support, but most of all last year’s shooting they say, sparked a movement to bring change.

But, these two dads still want everyone to remember the victims.

“I don’t think I could live with myself if another shooting happened, and things that happened to us we didn’t try to fix it or change it,” Hoyer said.

Both families plan to spend tomorrow with loved ones.

As for the Hoyer family in particular, they will be spending tomorrow doing two of Luke’s favorite things; playing basketball and eating chicken nuggets.

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.