In May 2017, 4-year-old Cole James Clark fatally shot himself in his baby sitter’s home in Orange County, Virginia. From the moment his mother, Kyrin Falcetti, received the tragic phone call detailing her son’s death, she has never stopped fighting for him. Now, Virginia lawmakers are joining her in that fight.
This proposed bill, known as "Cole's Law," was made possible by a collaboration with Child Care Aware of Virginia, an organization advocating for home day care safety, in addition to support from Arlington Delegate Patrick Hope.
Grace Reef, a representative of Child Care Aware of Virginia, reached out to Falcetti after the initial tragedy. The women discovered the lack of gun safety laws protecting children in home day care facilities.
They then turned to Arlington Delegate Patrick Hope asking for his support in sponsoring their proposed bill.
"Most parents out there see this as common sense," he said. "If you have kids in the house and you have a gun in the house you have to lock up those guns whenever kids are there."
Cole's Law mandates that home day care centers keep guns unloaded and locked up, with ammunition stored separately. The goal would be to keep guns out of the reach of children and prevent further gun accidents.
“It’s not about gun rights. We’re not trying to take away your rights,” Falcetti said. “We’re just simply asking you to properly store them away from children.”
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This law brings the mother closer to her little boy, and continues his legacy.
“It’s just like, ‘Ok Cole, I’m doing this for you. Your life had purpose ... the loss of your life did have meaning ... you didn’t pass away for nothing,’” she said.