Statements regarding the school shooting in Connecticut
Web Producer: Ina Ronquillo
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - The following statements were received by the KGUN9 Newsroom regarding the tragic shootings in Newtown, Connecticut on Friday morning:
President Barack Obama:
"This afternoon, I spoke with Governor Malloy and FBI Director Mueller. I offered Governor Malloy my condolences on behalf of the nation, and made it clear he will have every single resource that he needs to investigate this heinous crime, care for the victims, counsel their families.
We've endured too many of these tragedies in the past few years. And each time I learn the news I react not as a President, but as anybody else would -- as a parent. And that was especially true today. I know there's not a parent in America who doesn't feel the same overwhelming grief that I do.
The majority of those who died today were children -- beautiful little kids between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. They had their entire lives ahead of them -- birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own. Among the fallen were also teachers -- men and women who devoted their lives to helping our children fulfill their dreams.
So our hearts are broken today -- for the parents and grandparents, sisters and brothers of these little children, and for the families of the adults who were lost. Our hearts are broken for the parents of the survivors as well, for as blessed as they are to have their children home tonight, they know that their children's innocence has been torn away from them too early, and there are no words that will ease their pain.
As a country, we have been through this too many times. Whether it's an elementary school in Newtown, or a shopping mall in Oregon, or a temple in Wisconsin, or a movie theater in Aurora, or a street corner in Chicago -- these neighborhoods are our neighborhoods, and these children are our children. And we're going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.
This evening, Michelle and I will do what I know every parent in America will do, which is hug our children a little tighter and we'll tell them that we love them, and we'll remind each other how deeply we love one another. But there are families in Connecticut who cannot do that tonight. And they need all of us right now. In the hard days to come, that community needs us to be at our best as Americans. And I will do everything in my power as President to help.
Because while nothing can fill the space of a lost child or loved one, all of us can extend a hand to those in need -- to remind them that we are there for them, that we are praying for them, that the love they felt for those they lost endures not just in their memories but also in ours.
May God bless the memory of the victims and, in the words of Scripture, heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds."
Statement from Tucson Unified School District:
"The administration, staff, and governing board of Tucson Unified School District would like to express our extreme sadness at the horrific school shooting that took place today in Connecticut. We are thinking of the families and school employees affected by this shocking act of violence. As a precaution, TUSD School Safety has increased its security presence at our elementary schools. All district security measures remain in place at all our schools."
Governor Jan Brewer:
"Like all Americans, I am horrified, outraged and heartbroken at the news of today's senseless shooting spree at a school in Newtown, Connecticut. More than two-dozen of our fellow Americans were lost - innocent young lives have been cut short.
As law enforcement works to put together the pieces of this tragedy in the coming days, I ask that all Arizonans join me in praying for Newtown. Pray for the schoolchildren too young and innocent to comprehend such cruelty. Pray for those who were unjustly taken from their loved ones, and for the families shaken by a sense of grief difficult to imagine. Finally, pray that Americans rally together - as we do in trying and tragic times - to cope with this heartbreak.
Today, Arizona stands with Connecticut. Let us hold the town of Newtown and its residents in our
hearts and prayers. In memory of the victims of this tragedy, and in coordination with the President's order, I have asked that flags at all State buildings be lowered until sunset on December 18, 2012. I encourage all Arizonans to participate in this tribute."
Captain Mark Kelly:
"I just woke up in my hotel room in Beijing, China to learn that another mass shooting has taken place - this time at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in CT. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of the victims and the entire community of Newtown, CT. I just spoke to Gabby, and she sends her prayers from Tucson.
As we mourn, we must sound a call for our leaders to stand up and do what is right. This time our response must consist of more than regret, sorrow, and condolence. The children of Sandy Hook Elementary School and all victims of gun violence deserve leaders who have the courage to participate in a meaningful discussion about our gun laws - and how they can be reformed and better enforced to prevent gun violence and death in America. This can no longer wait."
Congressman Ron Barber:
"Today's tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. is a devastating loss for the families, the people of that community and for all Americans. It is especially painful because it took place in classrooms where children should feel safe as they grow and learn.
As those of us in Tucson know, senseless acts such as these tear at the very fabric of a community. In times like this, we come together to support each other. To the people of Newtown, we are with you today and in the days, weeks and months ahead.
My thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends of those who were killed or injured today as well as to the first responders, law enforcement personnel and medical teams who are treating the victims.
All of Tucson and Southern Arizona as well as the entire nation stand with the people of Newtown."
National Parent Teacher Association:
The following statement can be attributed to National PTA® President Betsy Landers:
National PTA feels enormous sympathy for the students, families and communities affected by the horrendous tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., today. Our country has experienced far too many of these tragedies, and we all share in the sense of loss and hurt.
School and child safety is one of PTA’s core tenets as it is crucial to effective learning. A traumatic event like that of this morning affects the entire community, especially the families and friends of the victims. This can be an emotional time, and it’s important for people affected by this tragedy to connect with and support each other.
National PTA has many resources to assist students, families, schools and PTAs in coping with school violence. The resources are downloadable.
National PTA believes the protection of children in all school settings is a fundamental right and has made this the utmost priority for our work and advocacy.
Superintendent of Public Instruction John Huppenthal
“I am deeply saddened and grief stricken by the loss of innocent lives at the Newtown Elementary School in Connecticut.
We know that school safety is a vital priority that each and every school across the state addresses. We wish that every school could have a program that would truly guarantee the safety of each and every child in that school, unfortunately that is not possible. This event today is just a reminder of the vigilance that all of society needs to have to identify and address those that have mental illness that would cause them to do such a senseless act.
My sincerest sympathies go out to the families and educators who have been affected by this horrific tragedy.”