Three time zones away from Newtown, Conn., residents of Coeur d'Alene stood in sub-freezing elements Sunday night to honor the 27 victims of the Dec. 14 shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary. More importantly, they came to remember that there have been 77 school shootings in the United States since 2000, 27 shootings in the past two years.
But the crimes hit very close to home, according to event organizer Reannan Keenan, who said she hoped Sunday night's event would help "remove the fear that's festering within our community," referring to recent Coeur d'Alene-area schools needing to close in the shadow of rampant rumors following the shootings.
This morning's Coeur d'Alene Press reports that approximately 50 people bundled together Sunday night to offer moments of silence, prayer, music and Bible quotes. There were also plenty of tears.
"I don't have the answers to fix this," said Brad Roberts. "But before we move on, I implore you to remember, we can no longer remain on the sidelines. Next time there's another act of selfish terror, there could be another town mourning for us."
Sunday night's event was dubbed "A Call to Love."