Raised with trauma, Sandy Hook survivors send hope to Uvalde “I think what happened changed my entire life.”Associated Press
By DAVE COLLINS and PAT EATON-ROBB
September 7, 2022
NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) — The survivors who were able to walk out of Sandy Hook Elementary School nearly a decade ago want to share a message of hope with the children of Uvalde, Texas: You will learn how to live with your trauma, pain and grief. And it will get better.
They know what’s ahead. There’s shock, followed by numbness. There are struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder. Anxiety. Survivor’s guilt. Anger that these shootings continue to happen in America. Reliving their trauma every time there’s another mass shooting.
They know it will be hard to say they are from Uvalde. That well-meaning adults will sometimes make the wrong decisions to protect you. That grief can be unpredictable, and different for everyone.
Children who survived the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting have grown up reliving their trauma with each new mass shooting in the U.S. Emotions well up especially when the shooting involves another elementary school like in Uvalde, Texas. (Sept. 7) (AP Video: Joseph B. Frederick, Julia Nikhinson)
But it wasn’t just what happened at Sandy Hook that day. It was what came afterward that added to the agony.
Alex Jones trial: Sandy Hook parents have PTSD, live in terror, psychiatrist testifiesAustin American Statesman
August 1, 2022
Criticized by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and confronted by some of his followers, the parents of 6-year-old Sandy Hook victim Jesse Lewis have developed post-traumatic stress disorder and live in constant anxiety and terror, a psychiatrist testified Monday.
Forensic psychiatrist Roy Lubit, a specialist in emotional trauma, said the parents’ troubles were not caused by their son’s violent death in the 2012 school shooting but by Jones’ repeated portrayals of the attack as staged or faked on his InfoWars program.
“It’s more than just interfering with healing, it has pushed them back … into some of their earlier pain,” Lubit said in a downtown Austin courtroom.
Later this week, a jury will be asked to determine how much Jones should pay to Jesse’s parents, Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin, for defamation and emotional distress after repeatedly portraying the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, which killed 20 students and six educators, as a hoax meant to justify a government crackdown on gun rights,
Heslin has had bullets fired at his home and car, and people who deny that the Sandy Hook attack took place have made threatening phone calls and sent harassing emails to both parents, Lubit testified.
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But they will not let that defeat the hope that they will heal enough to make a difference in this world to others. That as they still grieve, they do something to make sure others do not grieve alone.
A decade after Sandy Hook, grief remains but hope growsAssociated Press
By DAVE COLLINS
December 13, 2022
NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) — They would have been 16 or 17 this year. High school juniors.
The children killed at the Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012 should have spent this year thinking about college, taking their SATs and getting their driver’s licenses. Maybe attending their first prom.
Instead, the families of the 20 students and six educators slain in the mass shooting will mark a decade without them Wednesday.
December is a difficult month for many in Newtown, the Connecticut suburb where holiday season joy is tempered by heartbreak around the anniversary of the nation’s worst grade school shooting.
For former Sandy Hook students who survived the massacre, guilt and anxiety can intensify. For the parents, it can mean renewed grief, even as they continue to fight on their lost children’s behalf.
In February, Sandy Hook families reached a $73 million settlement with the gunmaker Remington, which made the shooter’s rifle. Juries in Connecticut and Texas ordered the conspiracy theorist Alex Jones to pay $1.4 billion for promoting lies that the massacre was a hoax.
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