I, like millions of other people around the world, have been utterly devastated by the events in Connecticut last week.
I don’t think I have ever cried so much over a news report in all my life; and the tears keep coming with every new article, photograph and story.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who is deeply affected by this tragedy, and it feels as though the whole world has changed in the blink of an eye.
All parents do the school run every morning; kiss their children goodbye and wish them a happy day.
The parents of those children did exactly the same thing last Friday, only their beautiful sons and daughters never made it home again; never got to leave what was supposed to have been a safe place to be: their school.
I will not give the killer any more notoriety by mentioning his name. Instead let’s think about the heroes who saved the lives of the children in their care while losing their own.
Victoria Soto hid her students in cupboards and threw herself in front of the gunman; while the head teacher Dawn Hochsprung had no hesitation in confronting him as he came down the corridor.
They both tragically lost their lives.
The brave teachers who thankfully were spared by the gunman included Kaitlin Roig; a young woman who hid her entire class in a small bathroom; even seating children on the toilet cistern so that they would all fit in.
She barricaded the door with a bookcase and told the children she loved them as they all hid quietly in the small room.
It is impossible to know what the parents, teachers, friends and neighbours are all going through in that small town right now, and certainly their lives will never be the same again.
My only hope is that the names of the heroes who gave their lives to protect others will be remembered long after the name of the monster is forgotten.