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From me to you, highlighting challenges faced by girls

Dear Daughters, Today is The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women

Dear Daughters,

I was only 15 years old on December 6, 1989 when Marc Lépine gunned down 28 people (20 of them women) at the École Polytechnique in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. 14 women were killed:

Geneviève Bergeron (born 1968), civil engineering student
Hélène Colgan (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
Nathalie Croteau (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
Barbara Daigneault (born 1967), mechanical engineering student
Anne-Marie Edward (born 1968), chemical engineering student
Maud Haviernick (born 1960), materials engineering student
Maryse Laganière (born 1964), budget clerk in the École Polytechnique’s finance department
Maryse Leclair (born 1966), materials engineering student
Anne-Marie Lemay (born 1967), mechanical engineering student
Sonia Pelletier (born 1961), mechanical engineering student
Michèle Richard (born 1968), materials engineering student
Annie St-Arneault (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
Annie Turcotte (born 1969), materials engineering student
Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz (born 1958), nursing student

Armed with a Mini-14 rifle and a hunting knife, Lépine first entered a classroom, where he separated nine female students from the fifty or so male students and ordered the men to leave. He told the women he was fighting feminism and when one woman told him they were just studying engineering which did not necessarily make them feminists, he told them that they are all a bunch of feminists because they are women who are studying to be engineers and he hates feminists. And then he fired from left to right, shooting all nine women in the room, killing six of them. He then moved through the university corridors, the cafeteria, and another classroom, targeting women and shooting them. After killing 14 women and injuring ten others and four men, in just under 20 minutes, he killed himself. His suicide note indicated he blamed feminists for ruining his life and also included the names of 19 women he considered to be feminists that he wanted to kill.

This was a deliberate and savage attack against women, who were killed simply because they were women. The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women began in 1991, in direct response to the events of December 6, 1989, and has been observed annually in Canada ever since.

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