Sandy Hook Elementary staff members were hailed as heroes in the days after the shootings. Officials say they may have prevented further loss through selfless actions and smart snap judgments. That included the head custodian who risked his life by running through the halls warning of danger. Among the 911 calls released Wednesday by the town were ones between Rick Thorne and a Newtown dispatcher.
Days after the shootings, then-Superintendent of Schools Dr Janet Robinson noted "incredible acts of heroism" that "ultimately saved so many lives."
In her blog, First Selectman Pat Llodra said Wednesday that there is great personal pain in this event.
An agreement between the state and six unions will provide some support to state employees who responded to Sandy Hook Elementary last year. Governor Dannel Malloy today announced that first responders and other state employees who were significantly involved will be credited with forty hours of compensatory time for their response.
Connecticut State Police Union President Andrew Matthews says there is no question that every state employee who witnessed the tragedy firsthand was in need of this support to cope with the consequences of the horrific scene that may never be erased from their minds. Matthews said State troopers, both on and off-duty, ran towards the face of evil and witnessed one of the most violent events our country has ever seen.
Lt Governor Nancy Wyman says this was a crime of unprecedented scope that produced an unprecedented level of trauma for so many who were involved in the response.
Malloy says the benefit is intended to recognize the extraordinary nature of the tragedy and that many of these individuals took sick and vacation time to deal with personal matters related to the incident.
Malloy says responders need time to recover from the severe nature of what they experienced through simply doing their jobs. He called this agreement only one step, but an important one to recognize the professionals who are there during unimaginable moments of difficulty.
The agreement will be submitted to the General Assembly for final approval. If no action is taken, it will take effect after 30 days.