NEWTOWN, Connecticut. – Five years after the Sandy Hook massacre, residents of Newtown, Connecticut, to do with what it means to be from a place whose name has become synonymous with the tragic.
Some avoid strangers to tell where they are from because they are not interested in getting into daily debates about gun control or mental health care.
Others have found themselves dealing with uncomfortable silences, or the acceptance of compassion, in the name of the whole city.
Pat Llodra (LOH’-druh) led the city through the tragedy, as the head of its board of directors. She says that she understands that the majority of outsiders just want to express how deeply they were affected by the shooting, and she gladly accepts what she calls their mercy.
But she says that the shoot is not the defining of the city; she says she has always been a safe and good place to live.