Tonawanda News


December 20, 2012

Hugging your kids is the only answer


Tonawanda News — The last time I broke down in tears in a newsroom, it was Sept. 11, 2001. 

That day was appalling, world-changing, but it was almost surreal. My overactive imagination is all-too-willing to provide me with the details of the Sandy Hook massacre. I’ve been in too many elementary school classrooms, you see. I can picture ... things I don’t want to picture. 

I know how excited my two little hooligans are for Christmas day. I imagine the kids in Sandy Hook Elementary were just as excited. 

I have to go home tonight and wrap Christmas presents for those two little boys. How many presents are already wrapped for kids who will never open them? There are hundreds of those kinds of questions. 

And no good answers.

The rhetoric started flying pretty quickly after the full horror of what happened Friday began to come out. Gun control. God in schools. The role of the media. I’m a little ashamed to admit I waded into the fray myself, words flying in anger, before making myself back away and acknowledging that we’re all just trying to deal with this in our own way. I may not agree with what others believe would make a difference, but to each their own.

No one wants another Sandy Hook.

I made myself read a list of the victims today, complete with photos. It seemed like the least I could do, to remember them. I can’t help but hold my boys’ school pictures up in my mind’s eye and shudder a little. It was hard sending them off to school this week. 

Charlotte Bacon, 6, loved animals and zoo. Daniel Barden, 7, played the drums. In a photo, he’s missing his two front teeth, just like my 8-year-old. Olivia Engel, 6, was going to make a gingerbread house that day. Josephine Gay, 7, loved purple. 

Text Only
  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On lines blurred, crossed and nonexistent It strikes me more and more how blurry the lines have gotten in all facets of our world, large and small.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo