Remembering the Sandy Hook horror

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It has been almost a year since the horror that took place in Newtown, CT. But yet, the pain stings as sharp as ever. Whether you are from the East Coast or the West, your heart went out to the students and staff at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Myself, being from Newtown, I was glued to the TV, my phone and Facebook, making sure that everyone I knew was physically okay. But I knew, as tears poured down my face, that it would take a long time to recover from this. It was all over Facebook. Those of us from Newtown were posting things like, “I never thought this could happen to my hometown” or “My heart is back home in Newtown.” Being someone who lived in Newtown for 10 years, and went through the school system from elementary all the way up to high school – this was truly unimaginable. Newtown is a safe town; a safe, boring, nothing to do, little town with lots of love and a strong sense of community. We went from a town that wasn’t know at all, except for the surrounding schools the sports teams competed against, to a town that is known all around the world as suffering the worst elementary school shooting in American history. Every picture that was shown on TV, I knew where it was taken; whether is was a sign, a building, or just a familiar landscape in the background. Just these pictures drew me back home.

December 14, 2012 wasn’t a day that affected just one town; it was a day that affected a nation. It was a day where we all said, “I love you,” to our parents, our siblings, our family, and our friends. Nothing will change what happened, and there will always be discussions about mental health, gun control, school safety, and so on because of Sandy Hook. Eventually, history books will have just a page or two about Sandy Hook, but there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t look down at my wrist and see my green wrist band with the white letters, Sandy Hook, on it, and think of the pain and horror that happened. Even though there was evil that took place on December 14, I don’t look down – I look up. I look up to the 26 Sandy Hook angels watching over me. Twenty of the 26 were kids, ages 6-9 and the other six were these children’s teachers. There is something about that age, whether their innocence or outlook on life, that kids just live so care free at that age. They aren’t worried too much about school, sports, clubs, the drama among their friends, or who likes whom; all they are worried about is if it is a nice day to play with their friends. So, every day I look up to the heavens to remind myself that there is time to be with friends, to laugh, to dance, to call home and tell someone I love them during my busy life. I know that what all 26 angels would want me to do is to simply smile every day. While the pain will forever and always be in my heart, I will smile. After all, “We Are Sandy Hook. We Choose Love.”

There will be a Sandy Hook vigil on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 6:30 pm in the Interfaith Center. It will be co-sponsored by the Podium and Greek Life. Everyone is welcomed to come. If you would like to assist or would like more information please email Breanne Lubinsky at blubinsky@bryant.edu

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