Throughout Newtown, Signs of Grief and Loss

Handmade memorial sprout up throughout the community; Newtown Convenience installs trees to recall victims.


Shaelja Patel was just putting up the sign Tuesday afternoon, but the trees had already been there for two days.

Her handmade message—"In Loving Memory of the Sandy Hook Victims"—is inked on poster board along Church Hill Road in Sandy Hook.

Next to Patel's sign are 26 small Christmas trees—one for each of the lives lost in last Friday's Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, where 20 children and six adults were killed by a lone gunman.

"The trees with blue lights are for the boys, and the pink lights are for the girls," Patel explained on the bleary Tuesday afternoon, as the nearby was winding down. "The black and red trees are for the adults."

"All the kids' trees have an angel on top," she added.

Patel's father owns Newtown Convenience and Deli on Church Hill Road, and installed the trees Sunday as a makeshift memorial.

It is one of many. Even motorists who pass through the region briefly on I-84 can glimpse the community's suffering; wreathes hang on exit signs along the roadway, and memorial banners are draped from highway overpasses.

In Sandy Hook, flags fly at half mast and churches like Trinity Episcopal have opened their doors for any and all to pray. Local businesses like Joshua E. Baum Orthodontics have pasted up missives similar to Patel's.

"We Cry and Weep With You," a banner reads.

Links to information, coverage for Patch readers:

  • How to Help Families Affected by Newtown School Shooting
  • How You Can Help: Memorial Donations For Sandy Hook Victims
  • Newtown Pics & Clips
  • Sandy Hook Victims Remembered: 'They Didn't Deserve Any of This'
  • Dear Santa: Send Love to Newtown
  • Newtown School Shootings: News Hub
SJBradd December 19, 2012 at 07:25 PM
A Poem by SJB 12/15/12 The cradle did fall Creating a gash so deep A scar felt by all Miles away my eyes will tear At a symbol of remembrance the tragedy there Aftermath so painful be strong to go there Pray comfort to those Touched so closely Helplessness, hurt, pain ,grief For those we weep The devil took his own life that day I hate so ingrained, he needed to take more Pray time brings comfort And may this happen no more
Pat Christen December 19, 2012 at 11:10 PM
THE POWER OF THE PRAYER by Pat Christen on Saturday, April 16, 2011 at 9:36pm · The Power of Prayer Father, I ask you to bless my friends reading this right now. Lord, show them a new revelation of Your love and power. Holy Spirit, I ask You to minister to their spirit at this very moment. Where there is pain, give them Your peace and mercy. Where there is self doubting, release a renewed confidence in Your ability to work through them. Where there is tiredness, or exhaustion, I ask You to give them understanding, patience, and strength as they learn submission to Your leading. Where there is spiritual stagnation, I ask You to renew them by revealing Your nearness, and by drawing them into greater intimacy with You. Where there is fear, reveal Your love, and release to them Your courage. Where there is a sin blocking them, reveal it, and break its hold over my friend's life. Bless their finances, give them greater vision, and raise up leaders, and friends to support, and encourage them. Give each of them discernment to recognize the demonic forces around them, and reveal to them the power they have in You to defeat it. I ask You to do these things in Jesus' name. Passing this on to anyone you consider a friend will bless you both. Passing this on to one not considered a friend is something I know Christ would do.


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