by Ron Marquette, Sartell
It started out a normal Connecticut school day in December, with anticipation of Christmas in the air – children happy with futures full of promise and life fair.
Who could have imagined what would take place that morning – the horror – when evil came crashing through the door. A gun was drawn and 20 innocent children and six brave adults were taken from us so fast, and the pain seems to last and last.
And now there is sadness where love used to be. Years taken and dreams shattered. Oh, the laughs, the smiles, the hugs are what really mattered.
Grief so strong for those who knew the fallen…mothers, fathers, grandparents, brothers and sisters, and friends were all in despair and so many others who tried to show they cared. Love conquers all, even after the fall.
The names ring in our ears – Benjamin, Catherine, Dylan, Victoria, James, Grace and on and on – and then come the tears.
A rickety old swing hangs motionless in the backyard where a child was – toys strewn across the room never to be played with again. A baseball glove rests on the ground…and just for a moment you hear the sound “Dad! Did you see me catch the ball?” A puppy awaits the bus that will never again bring her favorite person home…a mother weeps and weeps for that little girl who she will never again hold so tight.
There was a boy who loved tacos so much, he wanted to grow up and be a “taco maker” because he was afraid the world would run out. There was a girl who broke open her piggy bank last Christmas to buy toys for needy kids. There was a girl who danced to music whether it was in the air or in her head. There was a boy whose parents said was “just so good.” And a girl who every day practiced random acts of kindness, just because. All were precious; all made the world brighter and better…and now leave a void.
The teachers, the educators – so heroic and brave, now motionless lie…they taught us all how to live and to die.
Those who left us that day now are “angels in starlight”…if you look heavenward now their light will always shine bright.
Let’s now work to stop all the violence and say, “enough is enough.” Let’s all try to get along…and make their lives mean something and their memories strong.
Love to all and God bless each soul.