Some things we will never forget…. this is one of them. Nine years later and the pain these families is still very raw and real.
As with many other times in history we remember where we were and what we were doing. My kids were in 2nd and 5th grade at the local elementary school. Parent teacher conferences were schedule for that afternoon so the kids would be coming home within a few hours.
As the news broke of what was happening here in my home state of Connecticut was mind numbing to say the least. There have been many victims over the years of school shootings but for us this one was different. They were first graders who were still dreaming of what they would wanted when they grew up and still making their lists for Santa. Twenty children and six adults were killed that day.
I remember my kids coming home that day and wondered how I would explain to them what happened to inform them but not scare them. Tears in my eyes and they walked in the door. They had not heard what had happened but I have always been honest with them with the exception of Santa Claus, Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. At their age of seven and ten it was hard for them to comprehend but they knew it was something really bad.
Conferences were still scheduled for that afternoon with a few changes. There was now a police presence outside of the school when parents arrived. I am not sure if they made them feel more at ease or scared them a little. We met with our second graders teacher first. Admittedly we were all a little distracted. Christmas break was nearly upon us and she mentioned that she would be coming back to make sure the closet was cleared out for safety reasons. You see if the kids are all in the closet they can’t be seen from the window in the door. This is how the teachers and the administration were now thinking. The safety of the kids have always been a priority but now it was obvious to everyone and why.
Those kids would be freshmen in high school this year. Our hearts go our to their community, friends and family.
This past week there was an incident at our own high school. A kid bragged to other students and told them they shouldn’t come to school the next day or they would be sorry. Kudos to the school, town police and the administration for how quickly they reacted and handled the situation. That kid was arrested and there will be a hearing in a few weeks. I don’t know who this kid is and frankly don’t want to know. The fact that he did this means he has no true understanding how frightening this is for parents. Either that or he simply doesn’t care and just wanted out of an exam. Some kids were scared to even come to school the next day. My junior wasn’t nervous but wasn’t sure if that was good or bad. The school handled so efficiently I had confidence they would be able to keep my child safe. As long as he was okay with going I was sending him to school.
Today and everyday we honor those children and the teachers and administrators for what they endured that frightful day.
This version of this song always gets me….
Prayers to those families and friends that were affected by that tragic day.