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Sandy Hook Elementary Tear Down Begins

Sara Newman |
October 23, 2013 | 8:30 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer

Memorial for Sandy Hook victims, (Creative Commons/US Embassy Canada)
Memorial for Sandy Hook victims, (Creative Commons/US Embassy Canada)
If you were planning on visiting Sandy Hook Elementary School to pay your respects to the 20 first-graders and six school workers who died in a shooting at the school last December, you better hurry. 

Just five months after the tragedy, Newton residents made the decision to tear down the school and build a new one in its place in order to help families who have lost loved ones and other community members to really move on. 

Earlier this month, in a 4,504 to 558 vote, Newtown residents accepted a $50 million grant from the state of Connecticut to replace the elementary school. 

This week giant machines and construction crews began taking the steps to implement this decision, as they started work on the school’s demolition. 

As this week’s two school-related tragedies have reminded us, as any time kids are involved in acts of violence makes tragedies even more complicated and difficult to forget. 

To prevent any unwelcome reminders of the tragedy from lingering, building materials are to be pulverized on sire and metals are to be melted down immediately. 

"We want to be absolutely certain to do everything we can to protect the privacy of the families and the Sandy Hook community," Newtown First Selectman E. Patricia Llodra told SeattlePi. "We're going to every possible length to eliminate any possibility that any artifacts from the building would be taken from the campus and ... end up on eBay."

The school is hoping to have the demolition completed by Dec. 14, the first anniversary of the shooting, and the new school open by December 2016. 

Contact Executive Producer Sara Newman here. Tweet her here


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Anonymous (not verified) on October 24, 2013 12:01 PM

There is one more school hero to remember before tearing down the school: Michael T. Landsberry.

Shannon (not verified) on October 24, 2013 6:33 AM

If you wish to pay your respects to the victims of 12/14, why not listen to the leaders of Newtown and do an act of kindness in your own community? Read First Selectman Pat Llodra's blog, read The Newtown Bee's coverage of the town officials' statements. Do your homework before visiting Newtown.
The Sandy Hook School building has not been accessible to the public since the morning of the shootings. Fencing has surrounded the property -- a crime scene -- since shortly after that day, and an iron gate now blocks the beginning of the driveway. The building is in the process of being abated, and will be razed within weeks, so now the crime scene has become a construction zone. The surrounding property is all private, and the owners of all of those places are mighty tired of trespassers at this point.
There is nothing to see. Flowers and other items left on Dickinson Drive (the road that becomes the driveway to SHES) will only be scooped up and thrown out shortly after they are put down. Save your time and money: don't travel to Newtown and buy flowers that will never be seen nor appreciated by the families of those who were mercilessly gunned down that terrible morning.