Newtown cyclists travel to D.C. for gun laws

NEWTOWN, Conn. (WTNH)-- Traveling more than 400 miles from Newtown to Washington D.C., that's the journey 26 cyclists embarked on Saturday, all in support of Newtown and new legislation.

Team 26.

Their inspiration, while pushing the peddles, are the innocent precious lives taken on December 14th.

"With the taking of our daughter Grace, I can feel no greater pain, nor have anything left to fear. I appeal to those who have not experienced such a loss to look deep into their hearts, that which they think can not be done," said Chris McDonnell, Grace McDonnell's father.

His wife Lynn McDonnell stood by his side. Their family has forever changed since the Sandy Hook School Shooting.

"We lost the love and the light of our family, our daughter Grace. Since that day, I have made a solemn promise that her life would forever be celebrated, her vision of the world as a beautiful and peaceful place, forever honored, and her voice forever heard," said McDonnell.

With this in mind, Chris helped competitive cyclist Monte Frank design the team shirts. Hope Peace & Love is written on the bottom.

Frank's daughter had Victoria Soto as a teacher

"A great teacher and she's missed," said Frank.

Families, neighbors, and politicians from across the state gave them a proper send off.

They'll spend four days on the road, testing their bodies, trekking to the U.S. Capitol and urging new laws on guns.

Some include mandatory background checks in all firearm sales and eliminating high capacity magazines.

"We wanted to be remembered not for the town that suffered the unspeakable tragedy, but for a town that rose from the tragedy and tried to make a difference in the world," said Frank.

A difference, Chris hopes they can achieve.

"I ride for love, the love of the innocence and beauty of a child whose life was so full of dreams and boundless possibilities. I ride for Grace," said McDonnell.

They're planning to take care of about a hundred miles today and get to New Jersey. Then, they head to Washington D.C. on Tuesday.

Copyright 2014 WTNH TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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