RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – A survivor of the Virginia Tech mass shooting debuted his new documentary in Richmond this afternoon. "Living for 32" follows Colin Goddard's life after the shooting and his mission to raise awareness to gun violence.
On April 16, 2007, 32 lives were taken. Dozens more were forever changed. Colin Goddard was shot four times in Norris Hall. He has turned his story of that horrific day into a documentary.
The 40 minute movie shares what it's like to survive a mass shooting and what happens when you turn that shooting into a passion for preventing it from happening again.
"I don't want this to happen to other people. And if I can share my story with others and share what I've learned after the fact. Maybe it will change one person's life," said Goddard.
Goddard is now a lobbyist for gun control, and the movie centers on footage of him getting weapons at gun shows without a background check and in some case without even a license.
"I hope it gets enough attention from the public that politicians see that it's an actual real issue to us," said Omar Samaha whose sister was killed in the Virginia Tech mass shooting.
The movie resonated with many of the 150 in attendance at the Richmond premiere.
"It's powerful to hear from the voice of the young man who is the victim of the shooter, and to hear the impact it's had on his life; to see him transcend to try to do something valuable," said resident Susan Nolan.
"Seeing his perspective and hearing his words it really kinda touched me. Because I had friends that died in July and August from guns," Norfolk resident Antonio Mitchell said.
Goddard's now touring the country showing the film. It's even generating Oscar buzz.
"This film has taken it further. And the message is getting out through this median. And I want to ride the wave as far as it will take me to turn this negative into as much of a positive as I can," Goddard said.
Oscar nominations come out January 25th and Goddard is keeping his fingers crossed that Hollywood brings even more attention to his documentary and his mission. From here, the documentary is headed to the Sundance Film Festival for a debut this weekend. It will be shown for the first time in Blacksburg on February 9th.
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