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Chardon reacts to the Connecticut school shooting

9:23 PM, Dec 14, 2012   |    comments
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CHARDON -- One Northeast Ohio community knows just what people at Sandy Hook Elementary School are going through after a horrifying school shooting.

You can still find red ribbons flying in Chardon, a winter season after the high school shooting that killed three and injured two others. Police say TJ Lane was the gunman. He faces trial in January.

"You know you think about it, then you hear something like what happened this morning, and it brings back all those memories again," said Cheryl Farley, a mom of the three. Her high school student daughter was at Chardon High on February 27.

"It's crazy anymore. You don't know what the world is you know. It's sad you know," said Jim Barnes, who lives nearby.

"Kind of opened up that break in my heart that I had here," said Chardon School Superintendent Joe Bergant. He's been a pillar of strength for a community in mourning.

"It's been an emotional rollercoaster since February," he said. "There are many days that are good days, and then an event will happen in the community or state news, or national news that will kind of throw us back down that roller coaster for kind of a quick ride to the bottom."

That's why he still encourages people to talk to their children, their family and use school resources to help those fragile even before the shooting stay strong.

"The last thing we need is for people not to talk to somebody," he said.

Bergant says he prays for those in Sandy Hook, and knows from experience, life won't ever be the same there.

"Not only is today going to be bad for them, It's going to be bad for quite some time. They need to talk to people. They need to use the appropriate counseling," said Bergant.

Farley says while it's challenging for her oldest daughter to move past the Chardon shooting, she can't imagine the fear in children barely older than her four-year-old daughter.

"You just can't understand why these people are doing this. Why, why would you take a gun and go and shoot elementary school kids?" she said.

She's heartbroken for the families.

"I don't know what I could tell them, there's nothing really you can tell them," she said. "It's going to hurt."


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