A Facebook post made up of powerful pictures taken by an Ohio photographer is going viral on social media.
The images are part of a student-inspired project that takes a stand against school shootings. Christina Angel is the lady behind the lens. She is a professional photographer who has been snapping photos of students in hopes of giving them a visual voice.
When she noticed the hashtag #IfIDieInASchoolShooting trending on Twitter, she also saw that teenagers, including her own daughter, were writing somber and sobering messages.
"There could be no tomorrow, and that's a reality we have to deal with going to school every day," said Andie Angel, the photographer's daughter.
Christina Angel, wanting to help provide a platform for her daughter and other students who were using the hashtag, said she scheduled a photo shoot for her daughter and her friends at Hamilton High School, located in Butler County.
"I'm proud of each of them," she said. "What it boils down to is safety for the kids."
Each of the students posed for photos holding signs that showed their version of the hashtag. Devin Million, a sophomore at Hamilton High, wrote #IfIDieInASchoolShooting, "then I will never get married, have children, or be able to live my life."
Angel then posted the photos on her Paint the Sky Photography Facebook page to provoke a conversation. The post now has more than 100,000 shares and around 3,000 comments.
"I'm more worried about surviving in school than my grades," said Cameron MacBurney, a Hamilton freshman.
Angel said the idea hasn't been well-received by everyone, but she and the students involved in the project believe that the photos are not about politics or politicians or about the ongoing debate surrounding guns. The bottom line, to them, is that children dying is bad, school shootings are scary and the students in the photos want to see a shift in society for their own sanity and their own safety.
"We shouldn't have to sit in the classroom wondering if we're even going to make it out alive," said Aaron Caldwell, a junior at Hamilton.
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