Documents highlight heroics, horror in Newtown

Associated Press

Published: Monday, Dec. 30 2013 6:25 a.m. MST

Some of the parents thought talking openly about the shooting and getting accurate information out would help their child heal.

Detectives showed the children a simple map of the school's entrance, including the first grade hallway, and told them police knew Lanza came in through the glass doors and started walking down the hall shooting.

After the interview, the children were given a copy of Margaret Holmes' book "A Terrible Thing Happened" to help them process the violence they had witnessed.

IDENTIFYING THE DEAD

The documents contain dozens of reports from officers who notified the families of victims that their loved one had been formally identified.

Despite the reports' dispassionate, professional tone, the details hint at the day's horror. Officers wrote about returning coats, lunchboxes, artwork and clothing that belonged to victims. Some families were eager to reclaim their children's belongings; others said they weren't ready.

One officer wrote that he and a Catholic priest visited a victim's family. "Father Novajosky offered a prayer ... which they gladly accepted," he wrote.

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