Obama Meets With Families Of Victims Of UCC Shooting

By Kristian Foden-Vencil (OPB)
Oct. 9, 2015 2:07 p.m.

President Obama arrived at the Eugene airport today to speak with local officials before heading to Roseburg to meet with families of the victims of the shooting at Umpqua Community College.

Last week, nine people were killed when a lone gunman opened fire inside a classroom at the rural Oregon community college.


The attack shattered the first week of classes at UCC in the small timber town, about 180 miles south of Portland.


The president did not speak to the press, but he did speak to Senator Ron Wyden during the plane ride.

Ron Wyden spoke and said, "The families are of course really hurting and that is what today is all about. When the president of the United States comes to our state at a time like this, he is here to say that what Roseburg has gone through is important and he is here for the families.

Senator Jeff Merkley and Congressman Peter DeFazio also accompanied the president on Air Force One.
Obama met with Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy on the airport tarmac before taking a helicopter to Roseburg, where some protesters say he's not welcome.

Last week, in a 12-minute address to reporters that was broadcast nationally, Obama expressed frustration at the repetition and “routine” of the occurrence of mass gun violence in the United States.

“The reporting is routine, my response here at this podium is routine, the conversation in the aftermath of it — we’ve become numb to this. We’ve talked about this after Columbine, after Blacksburg, after Newtown, after Aurora, after Charleston,” Obama said. “It can not be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun," he said.

Obama is visiting Roseburg as part of a four-day West Coast trip.