MAMARONECK, N.Y. – Families gathered Friday evening at Mamaroneck’s Harbor Island Beach to commemorate the lives lost in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. About 75 people attended the candlelight vigil.
Friday marked one week since 20 children and six school staff members were shot to death at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
Mamaroneck Mayor Norman Rosenblum, Assembly member George Latimer and Westchester County Legislator Judy Myers spoke at the ceremony.
“The reason we’re here is to honor the souls and memory of those we lost last week,” Rosenblum said. “Many religions have a mourning process, and it’s not so much about grief as it is a celebration of life. The candles are symbolic, and the light reflects the lives we’re remembering.”
Those who came were given battery-powered candles to hold in memory of the victims.
Latimer quoted Abraham Lincoln from the Gettysburg Address: “We here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.”
“I think the fact that we’ve all gathered here tonight sort of says what it is that people in Newtown were feeling,” Myers said. “They were such a close-knit community, and then the unspeakable happened. It warms my heart to know that all the Mamaroneck residents can come together and resolve to find a way to make sure something like this doesn’t happen again.”
Rosenblum read aloud the names of all those who died, accompanied by a bit of information about their likes, hobbies and traits their loved ones will remember them for. He ended the vigil with a poem, “Life Beyond,” by Sue Walkinshaw.
Longtime Mamaroneck resident Alexendra Oppenheimer said, “I’m a part of this community, and for us to come together and show our support in this way is just an absolute necessity. When I heard that it was happening, there was no question. Of course I came.”