The Sandy Hook Victims: What can we do for their families?

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The tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School has sent the nation (if not the world) into a tailspin — grief, despair, confusion, anger, and much more. While some might be using this crisis as a platform for an agenda, I think it’s more important that we focus on the Sandy Hook victims and their devastated families.

There has been no shortage of information since the events unfolded on the morning of December 14. On December 15, the names of the Sandy Hook victims were released.

The children:

  • Charlotte Bacon, 6
  • Olivia Engel, 6
  • Dylan Hockley, 6
  • Madelene F. Hsu, 6
  • Catherine V. Hubbard, 6
  • Jesse Lewis, 6
  • Ana M. Marquez-Greene, 6
  • James Mattioli, 6
  • Emilie Parker, 6
  • Jack Pinto, 6
  • Noah Pozner, 6
  • Caroline Previdi, 6
  • Jessica Rekos, 6
  • Aveille Richman, 6
  • Benjamin Wheeler, 6
  • Allison N. Wyatt, 6
  • Daniel Barden, 7
  • Josephine Gay, 7
  • Chase Kowalski, 7
  • Grace McDonnell, 7


  • Rachel Davino, 29
  • Dawn Hochsprung, 47
  • Anne Marie Murphy, 52
  • Lauren Rousseau, 30
  • Mary Sherlach, 56
  • Victoria Soto, 27

Some of you (many of you) may be trying to come to terms with how to process this event, and how to deal with the emotions that this tragedy has stirred up. While we might not be able to do much in a tangible way to help the families of the Sandy Hook victims, there might be something that we could do that would act as a meaningful gesture to the families.

Perhaps sending letters of support, holiday cards, and your condolences to the families of the Sandy Hook victims would provide some type of comfort for those who are mourning.

The Sandy Hook community is a small, close-knit one. If you send a card addressed to, say, “The Family of Emilie Parker,” I am pretty sure it will make it to the family.

I think these would be the best addresses to send correspondence (if I get better information, I will update):

  • c/o Newtown Police Department, 3 Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470
  • c/o Sandy Hook Elementary School, 12 Dickenson Drive, Sandy Hook, CT 06482

Of course, I wouldn’t presume to tell anyone what they should say, should they choose to send a card or letter to one of (or several of) the families of the Sandy Hook victims. However, I believe that in times of great sorrow, you will know what to say and how to say it…empathy, sensitivity, and kindness are the sort of things that come natural at a time like this.

So, when I’m sending my holiday cards out this week to family and friends, I will include several for the families of the Sandy Hook victims who so desperately need support and fellowship and comfort, now, and for a long time to come. I don’t know if it will make a difference…but I certainly don’t think that it would hurt to let these families know that millions of people care and are thinking of them, praying for them, and mourning for their losses.

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  1. Lisa Sicora says

    Bless your heart for posting this! It’s a wonderful & caring thought. This tragedy is just so horrific. thanks!

    • says

      Thanks so much, Lisa…I hope that the families can find some peace and comfort, somehow…and, who knows where that might come from. You just never know what will touch the heart of someone who is suffering. This type of act might help both the sender and the recipient — I don’t measure my grief and sadness over this tragedy in any way close to those from Sandy Hook, of course, but this might be one of those gestures that has healing effects all the way around. I don’t know. It’s hard to know anything right now.

  2. librarypat says

    I don’t know that a Christmas card would be the right kind, but words of support would be good.
    These families and this town will never be able to celebrate Christmas again without being reminded of this terrible event. It has made us all hold our children a little closer, no matter what their age.

    My daughter works at a community college in NC and they have been in lock down twice in the past few months. In one instance shots were fired in the apartment complex behind the child care center where my 15 month old granddaughter stays. The other, just this past week, had a young man bringing a gun on campus. My daughter saw him just as she got the last person into the safe room. The responses of staff and law enforcement have been excellent, but as the Sandy Hook events show, it doesn’t take that long for a determined person to cause terrible damage.

    Let us pray that we as a society find some way to stop these people.

    • Kristin says

      You’re right, Pat…I should have worded it differently. I certainly don’t intend to send them festive or whimsical holiday cards…but more of a thoughtful one that expresses a message of hope and compassion, if that makes sense. I would certainly not send them a card that proclaimed, Merry Christmas!! Or anything like that.

      Of course, a few years ago, a young boy that I had read about was dying of cancer. People all over sent him Christmas cards in November (due to his prognosis)and the mother said they filled their garage with mail and packages…sure, it’s a different situation, but I think that if some feel the urge to send them holiday cards (again, appropriate ones), it can be done tastefully and tactfully.

  3. Rosie Kunie says

    Kristin, We need to extend our caring words of sympathy from our most honest feelings for these families. It was horrific how their loved ones passed. They need to grieve in their own way, but we need to be there for them with encouraging words so they may keep on living for themselves as well as for their families. I truly believe way deep down in my heart that as we look up in the night sky that those twinkling stars up there are all of our loved ones whom we have lost, but that they are watching over us until one day when we meet again. Sending lots of prayers. You will not be forgotten. Shine on!

    • says

      I like to think that as well, Rosie. We all will do what we feel is appropriate in this situation. I hope that these individuals can find some peace, somehow, somewhere…their grief is unlike what the majority of people experience. I don’t know how they will ever come to terms with this loss, but I hope these families manage to make it through.

  4. says

    Another thing I have always heard when someone passes away is to send them notes of encouragement later, after all the support is gone…I think that will be especially in these cases, I know that hearts are broken in that town, and we need to let them know we will not forget those children by continuing to send cards and letters for a long time to come.

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