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Santana High shooting survivor: 'Twenty years later and we haven’t seen change'

"We’re definitely moving as a generation out of 'victim mode.' We’re adults, who are parents ourselves, who are angry," said Kristen Dare.

SANTEE, Calif. — As we try to process yet another mass shooting, the survivors of San Diego County's deadliest school shootings are trying to do the same.

In 2001, a gunman entered Santana High School in Santee and killed two students and wounded thirteen others.

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Kristen Dare was a 16-year-old junior at Santana High when the gunfire rang out. She remembers being in the small quad area of campus, hearing the screams.

She said the shooting in Texas brought back a lot of memories.

"I think a lot of people my age, who have been through what we have been through, brings back a lot of the feelings we had as kids experiencing it," said Dare. "Sometimes you still feel like that kid that day, that 16-year-old."

Dare says she remembers hearing the noises and the screams from that day in 2001. She said she saw a campus supervisor who was shot, lying on the ground. She remembers running for safety. She managed to escape uninjured.

She is now 37 years old. She married her high school sweetheart, Brandon Dare, who also is a survivor of the shooting. 

Credit: Kristen Dare
Credit: Kristen Dare

They have kids, one is in high school. They chose not to send him to Santana High because they didn’t want to have to return all the time and relive what happened.

RELATED: Santana High School shooter wants out of prison, San Diego DA opposes request

Dare told CBS 8 that it makes her angry to think not much has changed in 20 years. She said these mass shootings are still happening and things seem to be getting worse.

She said her generation is moving out of victim mode. They want action.

"We’re older, we’re voters. We want to put money and time and votes for things that matter. And nobody’s right to own a gun is more important than the life of a child. We need to find a balance here," she said.

She said it's heartbreaking thinking of what the families of the victims in Texas are going through. She said it's also painful thinking of what the surviving children are dealing with at such a young age.

Meanwhile, she’s made a significant effort to make sure her two classmates who were killed in 2001, Bryan Zuckor and Randy Gordon are not forgotten. She's helped raise money for a scholarship fund in their honor. To donate, click here.

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