On Friday, Dec. 14, the small town community of Newtown, Conn, was changed forever. A gunman walked into Sandy Hook Elementary school and killed six adults and 20 children. However, it was in the tragedy that heroism shined through.
Three adults at Sandy Hook elementary school displayed a bravery not usually seen. Instead of protecting their lives, they ran towards the gunman and faced him down. Dawn Hochsprung was the principal of the elementary school.
Dawn was in a meeting with other administration including Mary Sherlach, the school psychologist. When the gunfire erupted in the school, the ran out of the room towards the danger. Both of the amazing ladies lost their lives on Friday.
They gave up their lives in an attempt to save children. The two women were killed execution-style when they confronted the gunman, Adam Lanza.
Victoria Soto, a teacher at the school hid her children in every spot she could find. When the gunman walked into her classroom, she denied the children were in the room telling him they were in the gym. Soto died shielding her children from Lanza’s bullets.
A parent who was in the room with Hochsprung and Sherlach at the time of the shooting, shared their heroic actions. “I went under the table” the parent said explaining that the two women ran out of the room. “They didn’t think twice about confronting or seeing what was going on.”
Jim Wiltsie, who was Victoria Soto’s cousin spoke with ABC about Soto’s face to face confrontation with Adam Lanza. “She took her kids, put them in the closet and by doing so she lost her life protecting those little ones. She was found huddled over her children, her students, doing instinctively what she knew was the right thing.”
“I’m just proud that Vicki had the instincts to protect her kids from harm. It brings peace to know that Vicki was doing what she loved, protecting the children and in our eyes she’s a hero.”
Mary Sherlach has been described as the “ideal school psychologist.” Former school superintendent John Reed spoke about Sherlach. “If there was ever a person, by qualification and personality, to work with children, to be a school psychologist, it was Mary.”
Dawn Hochsprung, Mary Sherlach and Victoria Soto are three examples of heroism in the face of tragedy. It’s the love and bravery that shines through during the darkest times that keep people going.
Be sure to check out Kelly’s other columns:
Austin Marriage Examiner
Austin Beauty Examiner
National Family and Parenting Examiner
Disease & Illness Examiner
National Sports Celebrity Examiner
Sex and Relationships Examiner
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