WASHINGTON — The Newtown tragedy has galvanized gun-control groups and turned victims of gun violence into advocates like no other mass shooting in US history.
In the year since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, new coalitions have been formed as have new gun-control organizations, including Mothers Against Gun Violence, a PAC created by former Arizona representative Gabrielle Giffords — a victim of a mass shooting herself — and Newtown Action Alliance.
As Interim Superintendent of Schools John Reed said recently, the effort Monroe went through to help Newtown following the events of 12/14 was “complex and extremely important.”
Within days of the tragic shooting, Newtown First Selectman Pat Llodra announced Monroe’s willingness to help by providing a new home for Sandy Hook staff and students at its then-mothballed Chalk Hill Middle School.
A Newtown police officer who responded to the 12/14 shooting incident at Sandy Hook School, and who has been off work since then due to subsequent post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), said that the town has not yet contacted him to negotiate the terms of his expected departure from the police department.
Officer Thomas Bean, 38, who has been a police officer for the past 13 years, said December 5 that he has received no word on the matter from the town.
From left is John, Catherine, Heather and Brian Pendergast, with the tree that will decorate their home for the holidays. The Pendergasts were one of many families who purchased a tree from the Newtown Middle School and Reed Intermediate School Interact Clubs on Saturday and Sunday, December 7-8.
Residents hoping to purchase Christmas trees, do holiday shopping, run errands, attend 12/14 services, or anything away from their homes are being encouraged by Governor Dannel P. Malloy to get all of their work done as early as possible on Saturday.
Gov Malloy urged residents n Friday, December 13, to avoid travel during the first significant snowstorm of the season. The National Weather Service has issued Winter Storm Watches for most of the state from Saturday afternoon until Sunday morning.
The overwhelming support that flowed into Sandy Hook Elementary School in so many varying forms after the events of 12/14 inspired then-teacher and Greenwich resident Kaitlin Roig-DeBellis to do something in return.
Ms Roig-DeBellis is currently taking a leave of absence from teaching at the school, and, with plans to return to teach in August, is spending her time focusing on other classrooms.
Many faith communities in Newtown are offering services and support for residents this weekend, to mark and honor the first anniversary of 12/14.
The media is being asked to respect the privacy of those attending any of these services. Many houses of worship have posted signs on their grounds asking all media to stay back while residents, friends, and families gather to remember those who were killed at Sandy Hook School, and to reflect on the past year.