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tv   ABC News Good Morning America  ABC  December 17, 2012 7:00am-9:00am PST

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angels. >> i want everybody to know what a special little girl she was. >> as a nation joins together to pray and prevent more killing, breaking new details emerge about the gunman, his mysterious condition, and his unspeakable violence. what will it take? what can we do? america's search for answers, a national conversation, starts right now on "gma." and everything here is still so raw. here this morning. the community coming together. putting together those living ment memorials together. a town in tears but also a town galvanized by their grief. good morning, america, from sandy hook. i'm joined by josh and amy and lara.
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liz intet in new york. right now, all across america, parents are sending their children to school, a lot of fear as well. we want to begin with gun violence, mental illness. we'll continue it all week long. >> are my children safe, it's a question parents are asking. security has been beefed up at schools and campuses around the country. as new details now surface about the horrifying moments when the shooter entered that school and unimaginable. to end that, we'll be joined by the school nurse. >> sally cox. she'll be with us in a minute. let's get right to the presidents right now. he spoke last night. he came here and met with the families.
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he was with allison, the granddaughter of the school principal. the president comforted the families yesterday. then delivered the speech. he told the people of newtown, they're not alone. a powerful call to action. a president filled with angry. >> i come to offer the love and prayers of a nation. mere words cannot match the depths of your sorrow. nor can they heal your wounded hearts. you're not alone in your grief. >> reporter: consolation first. and then, a call to action. >> this is our first task. caring for our children. if we don't get that right, we don't get anything right. can we truly say, as a nation, that we're meeting our obligations? the answer is no. these tragedies must end. and to end them, we must change.
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>> reporter: president obama, stricken and stern, promised to make america safer for our children. >> i'll use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this. are we really prepared to say we're powerless in the face of such carnage? >> reporter: across the audience, tears became sobs, as the president remembered those who shielded the children. >> dawn hochsprung, mary sherlach, lauren rousseau, vicki soto, rachel davino and anne marie murphy. >> reporter: and finally, one by one, each of the 20 little ones. lives cut short in the first grade. >> charlotte. daniel. olivia.
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josephine. ana. dylan, madeleine, catherine. chase. jesse. james. grace. emilie. jack. noah. caroline. jessica. benjamin. avielle. allison. >> reporter: a president's tribute, offering comfort to the families, encouragement to newtown, and a challenge for all of us. and the first two of those young victims will be laid to rest today. noah pozner and jack pinto. amy, you've spent the weekend meeting with the families and
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sharing their pain. >> it's been incredibly difficult. i have realized it's so important for many of these families that their children and loved ones are not forgotten. they want people across the country to know their names, to remember their faces, and remember how they lived. ♪ these are the faces of innocence. 12 bright-eyed girls and 8 boys who had so much living left to do. 6-year-old emilie parker was a big sister. she loved to draw and always carried her markers and pencils. her father was teaching her how to speak portuguese. >> the example she showed us is remarkable. she's an incredible person. i'm so blessed to be her dad. >> reporter: noah pozner and his twin sister celebrated their 6th birthday last month. she survived the shooting.
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but little noah did not. the family of 7-year-old grace mcdonnell tells us our daughter grace was the love and the light of our family. words cannot express our sense of loss. 6-year-old ana marquez-greene just moved to newton from canada. here she is singing and playing the piano with her brother. ♪ come now almighty king help us guide ♪ >> reporter: catherine hubbard was 6 years old and the niece of an abc employee. her family said in a statement saturday -- we ask that you continue to pray for us. the family of 6-year-old olivia engel tells us she loved school and was good at math and reading. her physical loss will be felt every day be everyone who loved her most. her spirit will live on. 6-year-old jesse lewis was looking forward to making gingerbread houses in class that day.
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his father planned to join him. then there was jessica rekos, who was 6, her parents said they wanted to create happy memories for their children. >> jessica loved to go sandy hook, such pride because her dad went there, too. >> now, i sat down with jessica's parents yesterday. i'll have more of the interview coming up. but i have to tell you this interview is so powerful. it left such an impression on me and the entire crew. there was not a dry eye. it's something that you'll never forget. >> now to elizabeth in new york. >> all right, george, thank you so much. new details this morning about the gunman. we're piecing together a picture of adam lanza. but still left with the question of why he would commit this horrific act? why would he target such small
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children? abc's chief investigative reporter brian ross has been tracking that part of the story since the beginning. what have you learned? >> reporter: good morning, elizabeth. authorities say they expect more progress today as they figure out the how and the why of what happened. but even veteran detectives and agents are having a hard time at the scene. he had a huge quantity of bullets left for his high-powered weapons. >> all weapons have multiple magazines and additional ammunition. >> reporter: as to his motive, officials tell abc news that computers removed from the home over the weekend provide important clues to his twisted thinking. it was here he killed his first victim, his mother, 52-year-old nancy lanza, who friends said had become more and more concerned about adam's issues over the last few months. >> it was harder for her as time
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went on, as he was getting through school. >> reporter: adam's parents were divorced three years ago. his mother was left to deal with him alone, according to her friends. >> she took care of him the best she could. >> reporter: since elementary school at sandy hook until his mother home-schooled him, adam was known by classmates as odd. >> he hated to look into your eyes for more than a few seconds. >> reporter: he was a member of the tech club. and the school's former security director says the young man could feel neither emotional nor physical pain. >> if he cut himself or hurt himself, he would not know it or feel it. >> reporter: he says lanza had several disorders and was seeing the school psychologist. >> he had periods of time where he would withdraw entirely. you would have to work hard to reach him again. >> reporter: police this morning say when he killed his first
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victim, he used the assault-style rifle to kill her with several shots to the head. a gun that she owned legally. elizabeth. >> and your expert in the piece saying he didn't feel physical pain. makes you wonder if that means he didn't feel emotional pain as well. we'll be delving into that in the next half hour. brian, thank you so much. let's go back out to sandy hook and george. as we just heard from brian, this tragedy could have been so much worse. there's so many heroes emerging, from the teachers to the first responders. lara, you have met with a lot of them. >> i have. this morning, we're hearing about the unimaginable courage that went on inside the school on friday. all in an effort to protect those children. the incredible instincts that led to sacrifice and survival. a clear picture has emerged of
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the heroes of sandy hook school. is there any way to know how many lives she saved? >> you know, i don't know accurately. i heard 14. >> reporter: like that 27-year-old first grade teacher, vicki soto, who lost her own life protecting her students from the gunman by locking them in the closet and telling the shooter they were in the other side of the building. does it surprise you she was found huddled over the kids? >> no. absolutely not. >> reporter: dawn hochsprung and mary sherlach were killed after confronting the gunman. >> they responded in the way we all hope we might respond. in terrifying circumstances. >> reporter: alyssa stone was a dear friend of special education teacher rachel davino. now alyssa has the painful task of burying a friend. >> she was brave and confident and would be the first person to get in someone's face. >> reporter: you think she got
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in his face? >> i would assume so. if she was -- she was a mother tiger defending her cubs, i would picture her acting like that. yeah. >> reporter: no story perhaps is more poignant than the little 6-year-old girl who was the only survivor in her class of 15 students. her pastor jim solomon tells her story. >> she, being such an intelligent little girl, somehow in that moment, by god's grace, was able to act as if she was already deceased. so that the gunman wouldn't target her. so she laid there pretending she was dead. and we're joined now by another survivor of this tragedy, the school nurse, sally cox. thank you for coming in this morning. >> thank you. >> i know this is difficult. take us back to that moment. when did you first know something had gone wrong?
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>> hearing a loud popping noise. i mean, just -- something i have never heard in my life. and your mind doesn't think that it could be that. but when the secretary called out to me, with terror in her voice, it just told me there was something terrible happening. >> and that's when you went under the desk? >> my computer desk, yes. >> while you're under there, you actually see the feet of the shooter? >> there's an opening in the back for wiring. and, as i was crouching down, i could see my doorway, because you -- in the office, you enter the office and then into my office. and when i heard the door close, you know -- and he probably walked in, and i was looking and i saw -- i could see him from the knees down. see the legs. >> right in front of you? >> 20 feet away. his boots were facing my desk. >> and he turned and walked away?
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>> it was seconds. he turned and walked out. i heard the door close. >> okay, so the door closes. what do you do next? >> after the door closed, i don't know how the secretary had the courage, but she did. she raced into my office and pulled the door closed and raced behind my desk. we pulled the phone off my desk and i held the phone while she dialed 911. we placed a call. >> thank goodness you did that. because the fact that the police got there so quickly, the governor said, prevented more killing. right after that, you locked yourself in? >> we raced into my supply closet and pulled the door closed. >> you were there for the next four hours. >> nearly. yeah, yeah. it was 1:15 before we -- we -- we were petrified. and we didn't know how many there could have been. we were listening. you couldn't hear a whole lot. but we heard screaming and the gunshots. and --
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>> i know the police shielded you as you left. so you wouldn't see what happened. >> right. they told us to close our eyes. they said, close your eyes. >> you knew every child in that school. >> i see them all at least once a year for their hearing and vision, so -- you know, and then, some i see a lot more often. but i get to know them. >> i know at first you didn't want to hear about the victims. >> yeah. >> have you been able to learn anything more since? >> oh, yeah, by saturday night, the list wasn't officially out until -- the public until saturday night. >> finally, i know you have been starting to learn that for now at least you may not be going back to sandy hook. how long will that be? >> they really haven't given us any indication. there's a lot of different things being mentioned. and -- but we know there will be at least a temporary place for us to go. >> and not back to that school.
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>> not back to that school, no. >> sally, thank you for joining us. >> thank you, thank you. josh? >> george, even as this town continues to struggle there's so much support pouring in from all over the country. children and parents a nation over, looking to comfort the grieving here in sandy hook. paying tribute to show their support for this heartbroken community. there's a simple spray-painted sign in newtown under an underpass. "there is no foot so tiny that it can't leave an imprint on this world." today, 26 sets of footprints leaving their mark. from vigils across the country to a children's choir on "saturday night live." ♪ sleep in heavenly peace >> reporter: at the new england patriots game. 26 flares before kickoff. one for each life taken far too
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soon at sandy hook elementary. basketball stars such as lebron james and chris bosh clutched their own sons during a moment of silence in miami. >> we ask that you now please rise, our thoughts and prayers go out to the families affected by this tragedy. >> reporter: and then, there was new york giants wide receiver victor cruz. >> it was emotional. i was fighting back tears a little bit. >> reporter: scrawled on his cleat, a special tribute to jack pinto. one of the first graders killed and one of cruz's biggest fans. cruz so moved, he reached out to the pinto family who told him they're considering burying jack in his favorite victor cruz jersey. >> i was honored. i couldn't express to them how great that made me feel. i told them to stay strong and i'll do whatever i can to honor them. >> reporter: one of the many honors this morning helping the people of newtown heal. their hearts broken, but their
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spirits strong. ♪ sleep in heavenly peace >> as president obama said last night, newtown is not alone. time now to return to times square for the weather and sam champion. >> our thoughts are with everyone there. we'll begin with a giant pattern change across the country. we haven't seen a lot of wintry-like weather here. now we'll begin to see a big shift in the jet stream. several storms from the west coast across the country. snow in northern new england today. also some rain. one storm system replaces another one. up to two inches of rain on the eastern seaboard. a quick look at the big board there. we'll talk about severe weather in the next half hour.
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and as we continue our coverage from sandy hook, you
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have a powerful interview with two parents who say talking about their children brings them tiny moments of comfort. that's an abc news exclusive. and the first responders in their own words. what they found when they arrived on the scene. responders in their own words. what they found when they arrived on the scene. ♪
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more good times to love. ♪ [spider-man] we got this. ♪ [mom] this hero stuff is easy! good morning, i'm eric thomas.
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we have developing news in san francisco where police are investigating a home invasion. it took place on sloat boulevard right across from the lakeshore shopping center. police say three men wearing masks stormed into the home and tied people up inside. investigators don't know why that home was targeted who are or what was taken. nobody was hurt. sue hall is following the weather morning commute. >> weather and slow. this is 80 westbound and foggy and mist misty there. westbound 80 at georgia, in vallejo. stall blocking the left lane and still in napa. highway 121 silverado trail, power lines. >> thank you very much.
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welcome back, check out downtown san francisco, light rain and in fact let's take a look at live doppler 7-hd. radar returns everywhere. whether it's drizzle and everybody is getting wet. it's coming from the west and around about noon. scattered showers and watch out for
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♪ looking at just one of the living memorials that has sprung up all over this shattered town. teddy bears for the lost children at sandy hook elementary. the town has come together through the weekend after that shattering loss on friday. we're here at the newtown methodist church. i'm here with josh, amy, and lara. we're joined by elizabeth in new
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york. the first responders are trained to be heroes. they're speaking out this morning about what they saw on the scene. and their heartache at not being able to do more even as they saved children's lives. >> and there are so many questions this morning about the shooter, adam lanza and his family. were there warning signs that were missed when it came to adam lanza? could this violence have been prevented? we'll have much more on that discussion about mental illness in a few moments. back to you in newtown. that is a conversations that will continue all across the nation. this morning, 20 families dealing with a loss that is impossible to imagine. the loss of a little child. you spoke to one family who also inspired you. >> i have never been so moved or so impacted by an interview as i was after siting down with the rekos family and listening to them remember their little girl,
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jessica who was so violently taken away there them. she loved horses, orca whales and her family. her parents say faulking about her bring tiny moments of comfort. >> she was a ball of fire. ruled the roost. >> our little ceo. she was the boss. >> reporter: when the call came on friday morning that sandy hook elementary was on lockdown, christa rushed through the town where she and her husband were both raised. >> as i was running, i kept thinking, i'm coming for you, honey, i'm coming for you. >> we had no idea. we thought, okay, the reports that one or two people hay have been injured. >> i walked around the fire house, like, maybe she's in there. >> i must have done 100 laps. >> i knew what she was wearing. i thought i would see the pony tail, the black glittery uggs
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she had on that morning. >> there was still hope that the children were hiding. >> they finally, around 1:15 asked everybody to sit down. and they said that, um, it was a tragic day in newtown today and 20 children were killed. and -- they told me my little girl was gone. >> there was so much panic and confusion. life was sucked out of everyone in the room. and you know, i -- just point blank found a state trooper and was like, are there any survivors. are you telling me that, standing here as a parent, my child is gone? he said yes. >> reporter: overcome with grief, they returned home. >> i got into her bed that she had just gotten out of. and, um -- we staid in bed. still not real that my -- my
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little girl, so full of life and who wants a horse so badly, and who is going get cowgirl boots for christmas isn't coming home. >> reporter: they say the pain is just settling in. are you angry? >> that hasn't registered to me. the killer's face, the name, i just -- i see through it right now. >> i just want to keep talking about her and -- all the things she loved to do. >> reporter: she was their 6-year-old family powerhouse, forever their angel. >> i found a little journal. i don't know when it's from. i hoepd the book. it was exactly what i needed because it says i love you so much, mama. it was like she knew we were going need something to help us get through this. that's just like what an amazing little girl she was. >> jessica was just 6 years old.
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her funeral is tomorrow. i wanted to share a story. before this interview began, we were looking at baby pictures of her with the family. i said, what day was she born. say said may 10, 2006. that is the day i gave birth to my daughter. and i felt such a connection to christa, knowing she and i gave birth on the same day and knowing her daughter was never coming home. the impact was just, i felt it right here. >> you could see it in their face. to remember her and be able to share her story with the country. >> it's important to them and all the victims' families that their stories are heard. >> we turn to the first responders. they received a standing ovation before last night's vigil. the police officers and firefighters were first on the scene, trying to do whatever they could to get the people to safety. we talked to the first responders in an abc news exclusive.
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they are trained to be heroes. on friday morning, the team of first responders arrived at the scene within minutes. prepared to save lives at sandy hook elementary. >> we set up a triage area right by the rescue truck. >> reporter: they waited, hopeful. then the horror began to set in. >> it was astonishing to hear what we were supposed to be prepared for. there was hope we would be able to help people. >> reporter: as those moments passed and you realized you were not going to be called upon, what was that like? >> we are trained to do this. we wanted to help people. there was nothing we could do. >> twlerp that day to do anything we could for their children. we're going to do whatever we can for them. >> we wish we could have done more. >> reporter: so many families would have done anything to see those faces again. i have spoke on the a lot of parents.
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spoke about the worst moments were when they got here and they hoped to see their child. >> it was the biggest roller coaster of emotion to see one family reunite and another one still lost. >> we knew that point there was -- there wasn't going to be good news. >> reporter: as the hours passed, so, too, did the hope. but some parents just couldn't leave that fire house. how long did those parents stay? >> some of them quite awhile. some of them stayed most of the night there. >> some of those gorgeous kids and the big eyes. it's so sad. they're so innocent. they did nothing wrong. they did nothing to deserve this. >> reporter: and they have to put so much aside. the woman you saw there worked three hours the morning of the shooting, not knowing if her mother, an employee at the school hiding in a closet, was safe. she was, though.
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we go back to times square and sam. >> we're going begin with the thunderstorms in the deep south. this week, we make the pattern change. the jet stream becomes active. we'll find storm systems like this one. louisville, tallahassee. atlanta. columbia, south carolina, involved in this. storms from washington, d.c. to mobile today. a quick look at the northeast. it's damp and foggy. one storm system is replaced by >> all of america's weather right here on "good morning america" in the next half hour. elizabeth? coming up, what did adam
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lanza's mother know? and were there warning signs missed when it came to the shooter? ♪ [ engine revs ] ♪ [ male announcer ] oh what fun it is to ride. get the mercedes-benz on your wish list at the winter event going on now through december 31st. [ santa ] ho, ho, ho! [ male announcer ] lease a 2013 e350 for $579 a month at your local mercedes-benz dealer. for centuries." ♪ this levian collection is amazing. maybe it's time to start your own. [ female announcer ] kay jewelers presents today's levian collection... [ gasps ] featuring exclusive levian chocolate diamonds. from the levian family - where the latest in fashion meets fine jewelry. one more reason kay is the number-one jewelry store in america.
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back now at 7:41. we're still piecing together a picture of the shooter, his home life, and the relationship he had with his mother. can you predict such violent actions? are there telltale signs? following a weekend of immeasurable grief, so many questions remain. why did this happen? could it have been prevented? >> i'm so sorry. >> reporter: at the center of the mystery, adam lanza's mother, nancy. she struggled with a son with increasing motion nal issues. >> she said, it's getting harder. he's getting orlando. >> reporter: abc news learned mother and son spent time at a local gun range.
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friends say nancy was a single mother doing the best she could. have she constantly tried to help him and get help for him. she did what she could as a mother. >> reporter: on saturday, the family's father released this. our hearts on go out to all hurt and insxwrurpd we, too, are asking why. he joins a number of other parents who have apologized for a child's violent act. people like tammy roberts, ro who raised jake roberts. he just went on a shooting spree last week. >> never could i imagine him being part of such a thing like this. as his mother, he will always be in my heart. >> reporter: a similar message that these friends of nancy say she would have given. could these tragedies have been sprent snd a question that the
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family, victims, and the nation alike are wondering today. and let's bring in psychiatrist dr. janet taylor and our legal analyst, dan abrams. nancy told friends that she thought her son suffered from asperger's. how do you preconvict someone committing a violent act? >> there are factors that have been linked to violence. asperger's doesn't necessarily mean that. if there's underlying depression, mood disorder, or paranoia. those are significant aspects as well. if there's been a transition, a loss of a girlfriend, something like that. >> he reportedly suffered from a
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condition where he did not feel any physical pain. is that an ind carrot of anything? >> it really is not. the question is, how would a mother have known? there's no way she could have known. there's no way as professionals we can predict who will be violent and commit a mass murder? 1 in every 10 families have adolescents or teens that have emotional disturbances, at home, in the community, at school. we need to address the individuals, get them into timely treatment. >> there are a lot of questions about why nancy lanza has five weapons in the home, took her son to a gun range where he undoubtedly learned to use them. when he was unstable. he was unstable enough that she took him out of school. >> if the guns are legal, you would hope they would go to a range to learn to use a weapon.
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let's remember, she's dead now. she's been shot and killed. >> she, too, is a victim. >> there's not going to be legal liability to her. very naufb these kinds of cases, we see kids shooting other kids. we say, how much responsibility can the parents have? here, an adult. 20 years old. not a child. the mother is dead. there are not going to be a ton of legal questions here. certainly not criminal. it will be tough to think about civil. >> i think we have to be careful. a number of parents home school their kids successfully. if you have a child with a mental illness, they should not be around guns or fire arms at all. >> period. much more to come. we'll be right back. welcome home. she loves it. nintendo 3ds xl! nailed it. dad, i'm actually totally satisfied and have no complaints. ho, ho, ho! so smart with your money! plus free shipping at
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coming up on "good morning america," your children, feeling safe at school, a national conversation. for months, i had this deep pain all over my body.
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or muscle pain with fever or tired feeling. common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain, and swelling of hands, legs and feet. don't drink alcohol while taking lyrica. don't drive or use machinery until you know how lyrica affects you. with less pain, i'm feeling better now that i've found lyrica. ask your doctor if lyrica is right for your fibromyalgia pain.
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good morning, i'm eric thomas. church services and vigils are helping people cope with the school tragedy. still developing this morning as services are being held for two of the young victims. tonight at 7:00 there will be a service in burlingame. it takes place at first
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presbyterian church. we're in for wet weather this week. >> by the evening, activities, this steady rain will be over. we do have scattered shower possible during the afternoon hours especially afternoon when the steady rain ends. we have a lot of rain coming thursday through the weekend. >> still jammed macarthur maze, accident left lane in oakland. >> the news continues now with "good morning america."
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good morning, america, from newtown. the president's dramatic call for change after the deadliest grade school shooting in history. >> let us find the strength to carry on and make our country worthy of their memory. >> this morning, indelible images of the youngest victims. >> ready, and go. ♪ come now all you >> i want everybody to know what a special little girl she was. >> as nation joins together to pray and prevent more killing.
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what will it take? what can we do? america's search for answers, an american conversation starts right now on "gma." sadness hanging over sandy hook this morning. see the church here, the methodist church of newtown. all across opportunitown, livi l memorials springing up. good morning, america. i'm here with josh, amy, and lara here in sandy hook. elizabeth in new york. we can feel the anger and fear rippling across the country. the president saying, america has to change, we have to change. so many parents, teachers, citizens asking, what can be done? what can be done to stop this mindless violence we have seen
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too much of in america in recent years? we'll examine those questions all week long all across the abc news programs. as we search for solutions. this morning, parents wondering, what can we do today? are my children safe when i send them to school? security beefed up across the country as kids head back to school at this moment. and we're going celebrate the hero principal. she put her students first, sacrificed her own life. we'll hear from her family in an abc news exclusive. >> as all those children around the country are going back the school this monday morning, we're going have some young children here in the studio in a tribute of their own to the victims. you saw the children on "saturday night live" singing to open the show on saturday. the first time since 9/11 they have opened a show in this manner.
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this morning, we're going to have the young people's chorus of new york city lifting their voices to honor those who lost their lives in the sandy hook elementary school shootings. josh and george? >> what a remarkable moment it was, elizabeth. we begin with president obama ps emotional visit here last night. the president meeting with the families devastated by the tragedy and delivering a powerful speech as he paid tribute to the victims. the president was greeted with a standing ovation as he entered the high school auditorium, filled with grieving community members. many of them surviving sandy hook school children, clutching their stuffed animals. >> all across this land of ours, we have wept with you. newtown, you are not alone. >> reporter: the service got under way nearly an hour late as the president first met privately with family members of those killed, including the
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infant granddaughter of dawn hochsprung. >> we say we're truly doing enough to give all the children of the country the chance they deserve to live out their lives in happiness and with purpose. we're not doing enough. and we will have to change. >> reporter: and this morning, new details have emerged about the gunman, adam lanza, with one former aquan tns describing him as a young man who knew know pain. >> if he cut himself or hurt himself, he would not know it or feel it. >> reporter: new evidence suggests that the death toll could have been much higher had authorities not arrived when they did. >> is the response, the arrival, the immediate entering of the facility, that saved a number of lives. >> reporter: the president was not specific about what he'll do to prevent similar tragedies. plu people predict tightened gun control will be a priority in
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his second term. >> if there's even one step we can take to save another child, or another parent from the grief that's visited newtown, then surely we have an obligation to try. >> a bracing call to action from president obama right there. we want to go to brian ross, back in new york. as investigators still try to piece together what was driving this killer. >> reporter: police are examining computers recovered from the home of adam lanza and computers taken from family members. they have established that t the young man, after first killing his mother with an awe sassaulte rifle went to school with enough bullets to kill every single person at the school, students and staff. friends of the family say adam suffered from several disorders, was in the care of a school
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psychologist. in the last few months, his mother told friends she was losing control of him, george? >> okay, brian, thanks very much. we want to go back to elizabeth with the news in new york. thank you so much, george. wee go paula faris with some more gun violence in the headlines this morning. we begin with more gun violence far way from connecticut. two police officers shot and killed in topeka, kansas. the officers were responding to a report of a suspicious vehicle last night when they were shot in the head. it's been more than a decade since a topeka police officer was killed in the line of duty. in washington, reports of progress to avoid the fiscal cliff. john boehner is in agreement
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with tax hikes for people makes more than $1 million a year. hillary clinton is at home recovering from a concussion she experienced reportedly due to dehydration. it's reported that john kerry is set to replace her as secretary of state. the probes will end a year-long mission by intentionally crashing into the lunar surface today. near the moon's north pole. and finally, you can expect long line at the post office today. the busiest mailing day of the year. because many of us spent the week end addressing our christmas cards and packages. over 100 million more pieces of mail will be processed today. the biggest delivery day for
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cards is wednesday. the biggest delivery day for packages is thursday. now with the weather, here's sam champion. >> the next storm into the northwest with powerful winds. with that, colder air and mountain snow. 50-mile-an-hour winds and snow blowing. and 60 to 80-mile-per-hour winds in the area in red. the coastal rain, mountain snow. a lot of snow anywhere from the cascades all the way to the higher elevations of utah as well. it's calm and quiet here. mem memphis, 62, houston, 74. midland, odessa with nice numbers as well. phoenix, palm springs. a quick look at the big board. on the west coast the storms rolling in. on the east coast, a line of
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>> more of america's weather coming up on "gma" in just a minute. now paula, elizabeth? coming up, sandy hook's hero principal. we speak with her family in an abc news exclusive. and the national conversation starting right now as we search for solutions for making all of our schools a little bit safer. [ male announcer ] this is bob, a regular guy with an irregular heartbeat. the usual, bob? not today.
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to stop the shooter. amy, you have more on a remarkable woman. >> i do, indeed. principal dawn hochsprung was the fearless leader of sandy hook elementary school. her family saying she fought for her students every day. last friday was no different. this morning, dawn hochsprung is being remembered a hero. dawn's daughter tweeted this photo saying my mom would be so proud to see president obama holding her granddaughter. but not as proud as i am of her. hochsprung threw herself in front of adam lanza. >> the principal of the school was running toward the shooter in order to protect her students. >> reporter: an award-winning principal is believed to have saved countless lives by turning on the p.a. system to warn others. >> i thought she was screaming.
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that's what we heard over the loudspeaker. we heard kids crying. >> we heard the loudspeaker and guns and we also heard screaming and crying. >> reporter: the 47-year-old mother and grandmother became principal twoo years ago. she made increasing school security a priority, all while keeping her sense of humor by transfoerming herself into the sandy hook book fairy to encourage reading. >> this woman was the life of the entire school. she was the rock. >> and joining us now, dawn's son-in-law, ryan, and her close friend and cousin, melanie. first of all, we're so sorry for your loss. >> thank you. >> and ryan, though it must be some comfort know your mother-in-law died a hero. >> yes, that was the -- the only thing thatky -- i don't want to have a conversation like that with my kids.
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but, you know, being able to tell them that you know, she -- she saved a lot of children and, you know, was able to warn everyone and she saved a lot of lives. so she's a hero. >> you had that conversation last night with the president. we saw the president holding your daughter, 6-month-old alison. what did he say to you? >> i wasn't there. my wife attended. i was home with the rest of them. >> what can you tell us? >> he spent time with the families. it was nice to have some kind words from him. >> and melanie, we see the stories of dawn and see how committed she was. exactly what any parent would want in a school principal. >> absolutely. i would say anyone who was planning on being a teemp, read the life of dawn hochsprung. because she was the ideal, the epitome of what teaching is and what a teacher is spoeupposed t
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be. she loved her students so much. obviously, enough to die for them. >> and the empitome of what you would want in a friend? >> absolutely. she was my cousin. but more like a sister to me. we grew up together. we wouldn't let two or three days go by without texting or chatting on the phone. there's a hole in my heart. i'm not sure how that will be filled, if it ever will will. >> how about as a mother-in-law? you're laughing. >> she's really great person. she was just -- she treated my kids like gold. i'm sure she treated all of her students that way. she's just a joy. i was talking to melanie about it. i had taken my kids on the hike one day. in a small mountain with a nice view. we were sitting and eating, another lady came by, she had a
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t-shirt on that was one of her old schools. we got the talking. she was like, dawn, we were just chatting. she's so nice. and -- i'm in the middle of the woods, i thought about that in the last few days. i'm in the middle of the woods. >> finally, before with e e go, is the one thing you want all of america to know about your kunz and friend? >> there's not just one thing. she was so vibrant, so full of life. and i want people to know she was a hero. when i learned that she actually tried to take the gunman down, it was no surprise to me at all. my only hope is that the gunman actually had a little bit of fear, knowing this 5'2" raging bull was coming at him and he had a little bit of fear in his eyes knowing someone like dawn was coming after him because he was trying to hurt her students.
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>> i'll bet he did. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> lara? we remember dawn the hero principal. children head back to school for the first time this morning since friday's shootings. your child might be nervous. it's a daunting but crucial challenge for all of us, helping our kids feel safe in the classroom. >> there are multiple fatalities including children. >> reporter: across the country, children getting set to go back to school. >> it's important to acknowledge their fears. >> reporter: teemps like lauren grapple with now make her classroom safe. >>ly continue do what i can to assure their safety. >> they'll be reaching out to me for answers. as adults, dwoent have those answers. >> reporter: one teacher's homework was simple.
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go home and hug your loved ones. another teacher wrote, i'll be locking my door this week. >> i'm worried about how i'm going the feel and let go of her hands as she gets on the bus. >> reporter: this morning, school dropoffs are a difficult and necessary start to a new day. >> one of the ways of demonstrating that their lives are secure and reliable is to have them disrupted as little as possible. >> reporter: child trauma expert dr. steven marin says it's important not to avoid discussing friday's events. >> everybody has being feelings about what happened. the opportunity here is to provide a forum in which kids can put into words what they're thinking about. >> reporter: now, as the nation mourns with connecticut, it stands, too, with surviving schools and the people who fill them with hope. >> and we now are beginning our conversation what about to say to our kids across the country
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about what happened in newtown, connecticut. joining us to talk about how teachers and parents wican held their children feel saver, jeffrey, and willow bay. i would like to start with you, jeffrey, thaend have willand th weigh in. it varies on the age of the child. for children 7 and under, we shouldn't be bringing this up? >> our young people are not consuming huge amounts of tv and radio that young age. we need to make sure their world gets righted, their routines get re-established. mostly take the temperature of young kids, see if you see science of sadness or anxiety. you could ask kids, anyone
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concerned need to talk about. i would not try to get very young kids to consume the story. >> if they don't ask, don't bring it up? >> let them continue in the world that 5 and 6-year-olds need to live in where they're safe under the caring watchful eye of adults. that does not assume that some kids may have heard something and we have to figure out which kids we need to talk to. >> it's important for parents to be calm and to reassure them that they are safe and there are grown-ups trying to keep them safe? >> absolutely. it's important for us as parents to manage the complicated and powerful emotions we have off camera, if you will. talk with other adults, work with them on our own, share them with your children in a controlled way and in a very comfortable tone to acknowledge that, yes there are very
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powerful feelings. then to reassure children, also in very specific and concrete ways that their school is safe. give them actual examples, because little kids think very concretely. here are the ways that adults are working to keep you safe. your teemp, your principal. mom and dad. here are some of the drills that you practice at school to keep you safe. again, those specifics give them comfort. >> what do you do with the older kids who know enough to say, but at sandy hook elementary, there were principals, grownups, a security system and it didn't work? >> you answer them very directly and simply and you respond and teemps know this very well. you respond to the cues of your child. you watch your child very carefully as you're giving them information for csignals that you're giving them enough and
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you encourage them to give you signs to give them more details. simple, factual, direct. layer on the details as you talk. >> geoffrey, you point out that teemps need to be on the lookout for signs of anxiety in the classroom because often times, children don't raise their hands and say, i'm upset. but they'll act it out. >> here, we have an important issue. some young people are very their own trauma in their life that this added additional trauma is going to really tip them really over an emotional edge. we need to be able to provide support for those kids. teem teachers need to be able to do triage. some kids need an arm around them and say, it's all right.
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til tell you this. all over america, teachers should be explaining to children why it's important to listen be calm, and do what they're told when an emergency happens. it will make kids feel better knowing there's a plan. >> and you said also, teachers may be feeling trauma. there were teachers slain in this as well. >> in my schools, all of my teachers worry about their students. but they realize for the first time, american teachers are on the front lines. most of them are not prepared for this level of fear. >> should a parent talk to their child about the event of a terrible person coming into their zone of safety? >> think kids should have a plan and parents should rehearse plan for them. it will give everybody a measure of comfort. knowing they can do something. >> willow bay, geoffrey canada.
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thank you so much. the conversation will continue. we'll be right back. good morning, i'm kristen sze. san francisco firefighters have rescued a man that got stuck in a chimney overnight. it happened at midnight on clay street and presidio avenues. the rescue caused a big commotion as crews had to loosen bricks to get him out. they don't know why he was in the chimney. the man is expected to be okay. your morning commute, slow in a lot of places. >> still slow getting to the bay
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bridge toll plaza, backed up across the macarthur maze. you might want to consider bart. highway 35 and highway 1 new accident. north 280 at 380 a new accident reported there, as well. >> meteorologist mike nicco is tracking the rain and now
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we have pretty good radar
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returns heading over to hayward and from san mateo back to moss beach and half moon bay. a little more around alim rock and fremont. we're going to have waves of light rain till at least noon and then scattered showers and temperatures holding right now in the low to mid-50s. get ready for ♪ somewhere over the rainbow way up high ♪ ♪ there's a land that i heard of once in a lullaby ♪ the young people's chorus of new york city, lifting their voices to honor and remember and celebrate the lives lost here in sandy hook over the weekend. we'll hear a lot more from them this half hour.
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as we say good morning from sandy hook. i'm here with josh, amy, and lara. and elizabeth in new york. this community struggling so much. but a big message they got last night. the president told them all here they are not alone. all of america here as well. >> you can see the messages all over town. we've all been taking pictures. they're so heartfelt. the messages, the flowers, the teddy bears. it's such a touching tribute as people try to do the best they can to begin to pick up the pieces. >> we're going to now continue a national conversation. big questions this morning, about guns, about mental illness, and school safety. to that end, as national conversation continues, we'll be exploring these issues all week long across all abc news platforms. elizabeth? >> all right, josh. we're also going to talk to religious leaders in newtown and
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across the country who are trying to start the process of healing in this shattered community. the religious leaders will be crucial to the hearing process. lara? >> thank you, elizabeth. as we have been here all weekend long in newtown, we have been just astound bid the enormous outpouring of spouppor from the people all over the country. as the residents of newtown, the victim, the families, start the process of rebuilding. just three days after the unthinkable occurred in this picturesque new england town, newtown has been taken over by neighbors, family, and strangers who care. all with a simple message. the victims will not be forgotten. why was it important to be out tonight? >> we have to teach our children how to love each other. >> reporter: at an interfaith vigil last night, families stood for hours in the cold rain for a chance to come together and
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listen to words of comfort from president obama. >> in the face of unconscionable evil, you have looked out for each other. you have cared for one another. and you have loved one another. >> reporter: as the nights wear on, more signs of hope. the words, a poignant reminder of what must be overcome. >> we're all in it together. that boy could have been my son. we have to embrace that and pray for him as well. >> reporter: as strangers become family, random acts of kindness are everywhere. >> this is such a small town. face from faces, we know each other. we see each other at the deli, we see each other everywhere. it's one family. it's affected us all. >> reporter: like a family, the people of newtown, whether born here or brought here by tragedy will face the difficult days ahead by relying on each other. words of comfort and so much
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love. josh? >> lara, this horrifying attack has reignited a debate over gun control. big questions about whether stricter laws can stop more mass shootings. pierre thomas joins us with more on our nation's relationship with guns. pierre? >> reporter: josh, as we attempt to deal with this tragic event, we found some eye-popping numbers that show solving this problem will be complicated. the statistics are staggering. on black friday, u.s. shoppers were not just buying toys and electroni electronics. they were also buying guns. in record numbers. on that single day, the fbi did computerized background checks on more than 154,000 purchases of firearms. in november alone, americans tried to buy a whopping 2 million guns. here are some facts that might
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surprise you. there are more registered gun dealers and stores than major supermarkets. more gun sellers than mcdonald's restaurants. the overwhelming majority of gun users are law-abiding citizens. the millions of guns already in circulation guarantee that disturbed people will often be able to obtain them, even in quiet communities like newtown. we spoke to the fbi on-scene commander. >> there are about 400 gun dealers in a four-county area. within ten miles of the incident, 36 gun dealers. >> reporter: police believe the guns adam lanza used were bought legally. >> in america, unless you have a felony conviction or you're a jude kated by the court to be mentally incompetent, you have the right to bear firearms. >> reporter: this morning, america is left with a question. how do you keep weapons from men
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like these, when there are an estimated 2 million-plus guns already in circulation. no easy answers, josh. no easy answers. >> to make the point, then, if we stopped gun production in the country today, we could still be years and years away from a solution on that task. >> guns are not bio degradable. they're not going away. the country has to figure out how to deal with the mental health issues and the guns already on the street. >> staggering numbers. thank you, pierre. let's go to times square in new york and sam champion with a final look at the day's weather. sam? >> good morning, josh. a storm cycle into the deep south today. likely to kick up powerful thunderstorms. the possibility in the red zone of one or two scattered tornadoes. louisville, nashville, atlanta, columbia. birmingham, tallahassee, you're likely to see the most powerful storms come out of this. we have a big storm system lined up coming all the way across the country. it will bring in much cooler air.
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we have blizzard conditions going on in the cascades right now. this is cold air and even the possibility of snow. watch the temperature go down. minneapolis, 18 by the time we get to thursday. we go from 49 in salt lake city into the 20s by thursday. denver, 60 today, 28 by thursday. this is really going to make an impact on the cold air moving across the country. a quick look at the big board. the rain and snow in the northwest today. sunny and dry through the middle of the country. that's your storm zone. we cannot forget that new hampshire, all the way into maine, and vermont, coming up with snow and ice as well today. there is plenty of weather to talk about on the board all week long.
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northwest is likely to be a snowmaker from denver to chicago by the time we get to wednesday into thursday. josh? >> thank you, sam. coming up, how faith is helping the family hook families heal. a conversation with the religious leaders here in newtown. ñ
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as you might imagine, the shattered community is turning to religious leaders for comfort as they struggle to understand what happened here. i'm joined by three of those leaders. reverend matt, bishop red keller. thank you for joining us. matt, let me begin with row. i was struck by your opening words. at the interfaith service last night when you told everyone, not only here in newtown but across the country, we needed this. >> mm-hmm. yes, i think it was clear to us as clergy and clear as part of all our traditions that of the importance of gathering together to grieve. and that there is -- there is that needed connection with other people. who are in the midst of trying
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to come to terms with things that are nearly impossible to dom te come to terms with. >> we could feel the pain in the room. heard the sobs. rabbi, you have had to deal directly with family who lost a little boy, noah pozner in the first grade. you have a very striking phrase to describe what you tried to bring to the family. spiritual morphine. >> there's pain in the body and pain of the soul. this is really painful. families just don't know what to do with themselves. you know. they want -- >> what can you possibly tell them? >> you have to see what resonates with the person. everybody is different. the pozners appreciated the theological understanding of it. basically, what i asked
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veronique is where is your 6-year-old? she said, what you what do you? she sai i said, where is your 6-year-old? she said, what? >> said did your 6-year-old die? she said no, it's within me. like that russian doll. it was something she could hold to that was logical. >> bishop, we've been so impressed by your congregant, robbie parker, who lost his daughter, emilie, pespeaking abt her, sharing the love they had together. >> yeah, robbie is just naturally that way. he es spouses the teachings of
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jesus christ. that's allowed him to show love for his family and those around him. >> reaching out in what must have been the hardest thing in the world. reaching out to the family of the shooter. >> he knows that if he allows hate to enter his heart, there's no room for light and love and caring. that's just not who he is. >> matt, how can a parent -- i mean -- i know that is the admirable thing. how can a parent not hate in a moment like this? >> well, i think -- each family, each parent, each individual is going to respond differently in the midst of their grief. i think we have to allow people to feel their anger and not to kind of just say, no, you can't feel that. i think we do undergird them, for us, as christians, the teachings of jesus christ about
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how we love our enemies, even those who persecute us. we don't say that's how your immediately going to respond. that putting together may take a lifetime for some people. we don't just impose that on the grief process. there are folks, experiencing that, is a testimony of a spirit of folks that can do that. it doesn't mean everybody is able to do that in that moment. >> i can imagine the opposite, r rab rabbi. i can imagine a parent saying there is no way a good and loving god could allow this. therefore, god must not exist. how do you deal with families struggling with their faith? >> this is not an act of god. this is an act of man.
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if we have free will, there's the opportunity to act badly. i heard from friend who is grew up with the killer adam that he was bullied in school a great deal. and that doesn't excuse him. i'm just talking because i do want to talk about the culture of peace. and peaceful classrooms. and -- i just bring that out there that there is a -- a certain pathway, the way that got so twisted. doesn't excuse the crimes. we need to look that, too. >> we need to look that, struggle for solutions together. you all set such a fine example last night with the interfaith service. thank you so much for that. we'll be right back with the young people's chorus in new york city. ♪ there's a place a place for us ♪
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♪ hold my hand and i'll take you
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it's probably not an xrajs to say that almost nerve this country is think of the family, the victim, the survivors of sandy hook elementary school. what better way to honor them than by a special performance of the young people's chorus of new york city. here they are singing amazing grace. ♪ amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a child like e me ♪ ♪ i once was lost but now am
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found was blind but now i see ♪ ♪ twas grace that taught my heart to feel and grace my fears relieved ♪ ♪ how precious this that grace appeared the hour i first believed ♪ ♪ amazing grace how sweet the
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sound that saved a child like me ♪ ♪ i once was lost but now am found was blind but now i see ♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ as grace leads me home ♪ amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a child like me ♪ ♪ i once was lost but now am found was blind but now i see ♪
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and thank you for joining us
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this morning for the beginning of that con ver sagts, here from newtown connecticut. the newtown methodist church. elizabeth is in new york. you're listening to the new york children's chorus singing "somewhere over the rainbow." we're going to be talking all this week on our platforms about this violence. katie will be talking to two victims from the columbine shootings. we leave you with the young people's chorus of new york city. ♪ if happy little blue birds fly beyond the rainbow why oh why can't i ♪
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good morning, we have rain in the bay area, mike nicco is checking out live doppler. >> good morning everybody. you see some of the radar returns in the north bay, heart of the bay and especially down in the south bay. that is where we've seen the best radar returns over the last couple of hours. everybody has been getting drizzle and light rain up to about noon. then we have isolated showers for the afternoon hours and low to mid 50s. frost tuesday and more so wednesday morning and then the storm doors open thursday through the weekend.
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>> heavy traffic out there. we also have an train 7 delay. slow earlier accident, cleared out of the lanes but the red dots, slow traffic remain south 280 at ocean an accident announcer: it's "live with kelly and michael." today, star of the new film "this is 40," paul rudd. and from "django unchained," academy award winning actor christoph waltz. plus a lesson in holiday etiquette as we kick countdown to christmas week. all next on the emmy-award winning "live." [captioning made possible by disney-abc domestic television] announcer: now here are


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