(NPR) — In a rare departure from tradition, Saturday’s weekly presidential address was delivered not by President Obama but instead by Francine Wheeler, whose son Ben, 6, died in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings last December.

Flanked by her husband, David, Wheeler called for Americans to urge the Senate to pass gun control legislation that it is scheduled to begin debating in the coming week.

“We have to convince the Senate to come together and pass commonsense gun responsibility reforms that will make our communities safer and prevent more tragedies like the one we never thought would happen to us,” Wheeler said.

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