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Port Arthur's Tragic Legacy: The Sunday Afternoon In 1996 That Changed Australia Forever

Video by Emily Verdouw with Emily Brooks

Twenty years ago to the day -- on April 28, 1996 -- 35 Australians lost their lives in the world's largest mass shooting at the time. It was, and still is, Australia's worst ever massacre. One hundred kilometres from Hobart, in a small Tasmanian town, Martin Bryant stormed the Broad Arrow Café at the Port Arthur Historic Site.

Bryant, 28, killed 20 people in one minute and 15 seconds with an assault rifle he purchased through an ad in the newspaper. He then continued his violent rampage through the site, driving off in a yellow Volvo. But before leaving the site, Bryant stopped on the road to take the lives of Nanette Mikac and her two little girls, Alannah and Madeline.

The massacre ended with Bryant setting fire to Seascape; the home where Bryant endured an overnight standoff with authorities.

The owners and a hostage were killed inside those walls.

Bryant was charged with 35 counts of murder, amongst other charges, and is serving life in prison without parole.

People lost their wives, their husbands, their children. And a country lost its innocence.

What followed was bipartisan political action under the leadership of former Prime Minister John Howard to deliver nationwide gun reform, now recognised and commended globally.

Twenty years on from the Port Arthur massacre, the emotional scars still remain for many and trickle through a community which thought it could never happen to them.

Australia has not had another massacre since.

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