Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT, where 20 school children were killed on Dec. 14, 2012. Web site photo
Earlier this evening (Dec. 15), Gov. Dannel P. Malloy asked for a period of grieving for the 20 young children and seven adults shot to death at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT.
Gov. Malloy acknowledged that people want to know more about the man police believe was the shooter, 20-year-old Adam Lanza, and about the events of that morning – many, out of concern for the safety of their own children at their schools – but asked that for a moment, people focus on the shock and grief felt not just in Connecticut, not just across the country, but in homes around the world.
Earlier, a similar plea was made by the spokesman for Connecticut State Police, Lt. J. Paul Vance, who asked that reporters respect the privacy of the families of those who were killed, when a list identifying the victims was released.
Among the adults who were identified was the school’s principal, Dawn Hochsprung and a substitute teacher, Lauren Rousseau. According to reports posted by NPR, Hochsprung was shot while trying to keep other staff members from entering the hallway when shots were being fired.
Authorities also have disclosed that all of the children who were killed were first graders.
Many of the details of yesterday’s events are still waiting to be clarified, such as whether the alleged shooter’s mother was a teacher at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
And as of now, the motive behind the shootings is unknown.
In a public address today, Gov. Malloy acknowledged that there’s little anyone can say that can begin to address the shock and deep sadness shared by the state’s residents – many of whom have flocked to vigils in their own communities.
“Though we could all try, when something as senseless as this occurs, there’s precious little anyone can say to the families of the victims that will lessen the horror and sense of loss they feel. We could say we feel their pain, but the truth is we can’t,” Gov. Malloy said tonight.
“When tragedies like this occur, people often look for answers, an explanation of how this could have occurred. But the sad truth is, there are no answers. No good ones, anyway,” he said.
“So what can we do? … As has been happening since yesterday, we can show and share with each other the grief we feel for the children and adults who were killed, and for their families and loved ones. We can speak about what’s really important, and what can wait for another day.
“There will be time soon for a discussion of the public policy issues surrounding yesterday’s events, but what’s important right now is this: love, courage, and compassion.
Love, as it has poured in from around the world.
“Courage, as was demonstrated by the teachers and other adults in the school building, whose actions no doubt saved lives.
“Courage on display, as it always is, by all our first responders.
“Compassion, as shown by people around Connecticut who’ve arrived in Newtown wanting only to help,” Gov. Malloy said.
He added, “In the coming days, we will rely upon that which we have been taught and that which we inherently believe: that there is faith for a reason, and that faith is God’s gift to all of us.
“Those educators, and those innocent little boys and girls were taken from their families far too soon. Let us all hope and pray those children are now in a place where that innocence will forever be protected.
“May God bless you, may God bless those 27 people, may God bless their families and friends, and may the pain their loved ones feel be someday absorbed by the love of mankind.”
Posted December 15, 2012
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