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Virginia to Newtown: Share Your Love

Help Patch build a huge virtual card to the Newtown, Conn. community and let them know they are in your heart and on your mind.

When unthinkable tragedy strikes, we grapple for a way to come to terms with the how and the why. We search for ways to make sense of what happened, even when it doesn't make sense.

The horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. on Friday stunned a nation as the news broke that not one child, but 20 six- and seven-year-old children and six of their teachers had been shot and killed by a gunman who then took his own life.

Most communities can only begin to imagine sorrow washing over this Connecticut town described as close-knit and quiet, a suburban community just 60 miles outside of New York City. It is something we've never imagined, so many lives cut so unbelievably and inexplicably short.

Patch is in more than 900 communities across the country, including Newtown, and when tragedy strikes one of our communities, we all feel it. We are left to question what we would do, how we would cope if something like what happened in Newtown happened in one of our communities—many of which are so like this town of 27,000.

We may not be neighbors in the geographical sense, but at Patch we feel a sense of community across our 900 sites. That's why we here in Virginia want to share our love, our thoughts and our prayers with our neighbors in Newtown, and we want your help.

“There is a saying in Tibetan, 'Tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength.' No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful experience is, if we lose our hope, that's our real disaster.” – The Dalai Lama

Newtown is sure to be inundated with flowers and gifts over the coming days and weeks. Creation of memorial funds and teddy bear drives have already begun, so we wanted to do what we do best—pull our communities together through our sites and social media—and create a huge virtual card for the close-knit community that lost so much on Friday.

Here's what you can do:

  • Upload a photo like the one above, with a message for the families who lost their loved ones, for the students who lost their classmates, for the community trying to make sense of it all and find peace again.
  • Upload a video with a message from you or your family.
  • Do your kids want to do something? Upload a photo of a card from them to the students at Sandy Hook School.
  • Businesses: Do you have a sign board out front? Share your message to the Newtown community and upload a photo.

To upload a photo or video, make sure you're signed into your Patch account and click the "Upload photos and videos" button. If you need to create an account, you can do so by clicking "join" at the top of the page. It takes just a minute and is free.

Let's show our love and support for Newtown as it grieves and eventually begins to heal from Friday's senseless tragedy.

If you want to send a donation to the families affected by Friday's shooting, get more information here.

Follow Newtown Patch's coverage of the Sandy Hook School shooting here.

Carol Lewis December 20, 2012 at 10:34 PM
T-Bird, As you said freedom of speech applies to the government not prohibiting it, not private companies that can have their own rules of discussion and what they will permit and what they won't. As for the post that you found offensive, I can understand your objection to the misapprehension on the part of the poster that the bomb was American made, but she is free to put her sympathies and sorrow where she pleases. I think that we all mourn the death of children no matter where they are and we mourn the deaths of our troops as well. I don't see her comment as anywhere near being an attack on Newtown. Please, this is a sad time for all of us. Don't make it worse for her or us or yourself by continuing down this road. It is possible to feel sad for more than one group of people. As for your attack on those of us who live here, I think there have been times when the discussion on Patch has been less than civil, but we are caring people who feel just as passionately about our point of view as you do about yours. I find your comment that we are lacking in love somewhat offensive, but I'm not asking that it be taken down. I just wish you didn't feel that way and am sorry for you that you do.
T-Bird December 20, 2012 at 11:45 PM
What makes it worse is the original comment. What makes it worse is that some people think it's ok. That's what makes it worse. A person comes to a page like this, which was intended to be a memorial, and uses it as a soapbox for politically tinged rantings, and that's ok? No. Remove the comment and I will stop. That would be doing the right thing.
T-Bird December 20, 2012 at 11:49 PM
And don't feel sorry for me. Every day in the streets and stores of this community I see the insensitivity and callousness that simply bleeds over into here. And it only gets worse. If there is heart in this community, I have in 7 years yet to see it. Perhaps you remember a different time.
Carol Lewis December 20, 2012 at 11:51 PM
I see nothing in the comment that even begins to look like a rant. She said she had love for the Newtown victims. I think if you look back through the posts, yours are the ones that are rants. Please give this up...or if not, perhaps the editor can take down all posts except those that express only love for Newtown.
Beth Lawton December 20, 2012 at 11:59 PM
Hi all, We are shutting down comments on this thread. We hoped that people would take this opportunity to upload positive images and leave comments supporting those in Newtown who have lost loved ones right at the holidays without turning this into a political debate. Unfortunately, we aren't seeing that sentiment from some of our readers. Thanks to those who followed the spirit of this post. Beth Lawton Regional Editor, Northern Virginia

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