DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. – Dozens gathered in Dobbs Ferry in a solemn show of support Sunday night for families of the victims in the Newtown, Conn., elementary school shooting.
As a steady sprinkling of rain fell, candlelight flickered inside Waterfront Park as residents came to honor the victims and begin the healing process. Gabrielle Mason, co-organizer of the vigil, said they wanted the community to come together in grief and in hope of a safer society.
“Every mom I know is crying, whether they are muffled behind closed doors trying not to terrify the little listening ears or openly with friends gathered as we are here now,” she said. “I’m here because I share with those families their grief, because they are all our children.”
Standing along the waterfront, they listened, comforted one another and offered words of hope. Afterward, many marched through the downtown streets before stopping in front of the Holiday Tree and menorah on Cedar and Main streets.
Co-organizer Jean Lucasey said she was crying Saturday morning as she read news reports about the shooting and said this was their way of honoring the victims.
“In a situation like this there are people who feel powerless and there are people who want to try to help the victims and wish in their hearts nothing like this ever happens again,” she said.
Throughout the nation, crowds have gathered to remember the victims of Friday’s massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School. In Westchester, similar vigils were held in Yonkers, Ossining and Rye on Sunday evening.
In Dobbs Ferry, which is less than an hour away from Newtown, many who gathered Sunday said the tragic school shooting hit home.
“It touched everybody in the heart,” Paula Dambroff said. “It’s a very personal thing. It’s your home, it’s your children. It’s devastating.”
Juli Klein said her daughter was affected by the tragic shooting and said Sunday evening’s vigil was a source of comfort for her family.
“It was just part of the healing process,” she said. “And it’s our way of doing something. We didn’t know what else to do.”