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The two moms pictured in the iconic photo hugging one another in the aftermath of the Parkland shooting have revealed they no longer speak and say the whole community is now fractured in two over gun policy.
The image of the women outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High become emblematic of the school massacre in which 17 were killed. It would appear on websites, front pages and broadcasts around the world as details emerged of the students and staff killed.
Tall - Blonde - Smudge - Ash - Wednesday
It showed one of them, a tall, weeping blonde with the black smudge of an Ash Wednesday cross on her forehead, the other a petite redhead crying in despair on her shoulder outside the school on February 14 last year.
But now, almost a year after the shooting, the two women say they themselves are at odds - like the nation itself - over gun control.
Community - Factions - 'fights - Facebook
They say the community 'fractured into two factions now' with 'fights like you wouldn't believe on Facebook'.
Cathi Rush, the redhead, was desperately waiting to find out whether her 14-year-old son Brandon, who was hiding under a table, was alive. The blonde was Mechelle Boyle, whose three children did not attend the high school and were safe.
Searing - Associated - Press - Photograph - Joel
Both of them were captured in the searing Associated Press photograph, taken by Joel Auerbach, moments after the shooting.
Boyle, who until now turned down all interview requests as she didn't lose a child and didn't feel she had anything to say, said her 'heart just started breaking' for Rush. She hadn't heard from her freshman son for nearly an hour when the image of her being held by Boyle, a longtime acquaintance, was taken.
Rush - Image - 'In - Moment - Moms
Mom-of-three Rush, who initially said she hated the image, now says: 'In that moment it was just two moms comforting each other, scared for their kids. Not only for their kids,...
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