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Emotional performance of Jennifer Hudson at DC's March after losing family to gun violence

Pedro Marrero
Mar 27, 2018
01:18 A.M.

Singer Jennifer Hudson says she's standing by the March for Our Lives protesters. After all, she knows all too well that gun violence can happen to anybody.

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After her stirring performance before hundreds of thousands of demonstrators rallying for action against gun violence, the Oscar-winning singer spoke out about the march and her personal tragedy.

According to a Hollywood Life report, as one of the countless individuals who has lost family or friends to gun violence, Hudson hasn’t shied away from using her platform to bring attention to the need for gun control.

Jennifer Hudson recalled the heartbreaking loss of her family to gun violence in the March For Our Lives protest. Three members of Hudson’s family were fatally shot in October 2008.

Her mother Darnell Donerson, 57, her brother Jason Hudson, 29, and her nephew Julian King, 7, were killed back then. A jury found William Balfour guilty of the murders, and a judge sentenced him to three consecutive life terms.

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The survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting as well as other teenagers impacted by gun violence then joined Hudson onstage for the song's closing chorus and to lead the crowd of thousands in a chant of "We Want Change."

It was a profoundly emotional final performance in a profoundly powerful day, full of speeches, solidarity, and encouragement to take an active role in ending gun violence.

Hudson's performance came immediately after Douglas High School student Emma Gonzalez's moving speech that included a nearly six-minute moment of silence that represented the length of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

Celebrities attending the Washington event included power couples George and Amal Clooney and Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg, who helped fund the protests with a combined $1 million donation.

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Also attending were Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, Glenn Close, Cher, Jimmy Fallon and Dennis Rodman. Common, Cyrus, Andra Day, Vic Mensa, Demi Lovato, Ben Platt and Ariana Grande performed in Washington, and Rita Ora took the stage in Los Angeles.

Grande, who experienced violence first-hand when a suicide bomber attacked her 2017 concert in Manchester, England, killing 22 people and injuring dozens more, sang "Be Alright."

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