Noah Pozner, a 6-year-old boy who belongs to the Jewish community in Newtown, CT was among the victims. Noah’s twin sister, also a student at the school, survived.
A family friend said that that the first grader was shot from a very short range, “execution-style.”
“His tiny body couldn’t handle it,” the friend said.
Rabbi Shaul Praver of Newtown convened the town’s Jewish congregation at the Adath Israel Synagogue on Saturday and urged worshipers to react “with love and positivity in the wake of this tragedy.”
The boy’s mother, Veronique Pozner, a nurse, was among the parents who rushed to the school as news of the shooting got out. When Noah failed to exit the school, she realized what had happened.
“She didn’t know what do with herself,” Praver recalled, noting she had burst into tears. While the rabbi didn’t know Noah personally, he knew his family and even taught the boy’s brother, David, before his Bar Mitzvah.
He told the congregation that the shootings reaffirm the “presence of evil in the world,” but asked the worshipers to remember that “it’s not God who did these things, but a deranged person,” according to the CT Post.
Stunned residents and exhausted officials continued Saturday to fill in the details of the attack.
The school’s well-liked principal, Dawn Hochsprung, was killed while lunging at the gunman as she tried to overtake him, town officials said. Board of Education chairwoman Debbie Liedlien said administrators were coming out of a meeting when the gunman forced his way into the school, and they ran toward them.
Police said the shooter had no connection to the school in Newtown, a small and picturesque New England community about 60 miles northeast of New York City.