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How to Remember a Tragedy

Rather than remembering another killer’s name, let’s remember their names. Last night I was picking up a pizza and CNN was on the pizza shop television. I saw a clip of one of the fathers coming out of a church service (of course there were cameras in his face because our sensationalist media knows nothing of respect), and he looked as if he had aged twenty years overnight. I cannot imagine the pain he feels. He talked about his daughter and how she lit up a room whenever she walked in.

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At my own church last night the priest talked about the monsignor in Newtown, CT who had baptized 10 of the 20 children killed. Now, that monsignor has to see over the funerals of the same children he had baptized just 6 or 7 years ago.

The other night my son and I talked about this (as did he and his mother). Sometimes we never have just the right words for our children. Our parents didn’t either, but we didn’t live in a world fraught with this level of evil the way our children do.

I wish I could tell my son it won’t happen ever again, but I do not like to lie to him. Children shouldn’t have to police their own schools, being on the lookout for anything out-of-place, for strangers in their familiar halls. They are there to learn, to grow, to make friends, to endure the pecking order (as we all have in our time), and maybe even to experience a few crushes before they get older.

These are just a few reasons why we should try to remember the names of victims as we move forward, and leave behind the killer’s name so that his twisted wish for immortality is nullified.

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