Sandy Hook Tragedy: Mainstreet Women Heroines & Moms

I promised you a different blog post today, a breezy holiday piece. In the wake of the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday, my heart’s not there.

Sandy Hook, population 11,000, looks like many Main Streets in America. Friday’s unthinkable tragedy changed that community, those families’ lives, forever. Once again, we see images of terror and pain, sorrow and loss, in a town that feels so familiar.

It is almost too much to bear, hearing 1st grade teacher Kaitlin Roig recall what the little ones in her class cried, ‘I just want Christmas. I don’t want to die, I just want Christmas.’ 


We have now learned that Mainstreet Women acted with extraordinary bravery on Friday. Principal Dawn Hochsprung and School Psychologist Mary Sherlach charged the gunman, dying in the process. Teacher Victoria Soto shielded students with her own body and perished.

Prayers and thoughts go out to all the families in Sandy Hook, a burrough of Newtown, CT, where the dead include:  12 girls, 8 boys and 6 women. Hearts also go out to the family of Adam Lanzan and his Mom, Nancy.


Today, it feels right to share Mainstreet Women’s voices about family, about children, and others they are proud of nurturing.

The thing I’m most proud of is raising two kids to have a sense of humor. Humor is what helps you make it through the trials of life. My kids have that lighter side, things strike them as funny. I’m not a worrier, humor helps keep things in perspective, keeps you grounded. Humor makes the worries of the world a little less. I passed that sense of humor onto my kids and they pass it onto others. (Mary, NV)

Having two adorable children that are going to be a true light in this world, already are, but will be more as they grow! I’m so proud of those two, proud of the experience of being a Mom to them. (Rossell, CA)

I want girls to have equal opportunities across the board. And, I love being a Mom but now it is okay for women not to have children. It was thought of as odd before – I think that is all part of women doing better. It is okay not to have children! (Donna, PA)

I’m proud of how well my kids turned out – they’re good people, kind people, and educated. I’m proud that I’m educated too. The top of my list is that my kids are healthy and well. It is a blessing! (Lisa, PA)


I’m proud of being a mother. Motherhood to me is not just the kids I have; I mother people in the workforce too. As women, mothering is nurturing, being a cheerleader, pushing them when they need to be pushed, giving them opportunities at work – it doesn’t just mean your own children. I guess I’m a “work mother” to many young people in the workforce. I have 3 daughters and that is a very rewarding experience. Yet in my life, I mother many, I mentor many young women. (Lisa, DC)

Family is the thing I’m proudest of. I’ve had so many opportunities in business, but my greatest passion is helping the business grow by using that nurturing side. That is a desire of mine – for my own children and as the “Office Mom” – I’m proud of that. They call me Office Mom and it is not said in a derogatory way, it is sincere. (Elizabeth, SC)


According to the medical examiner,he found 11 bullets in some of Sandy Hook School children’s little bodies. The entire assault lasted about 10 minutes.

Last Friday, the President said “we’re going to have to come together.” He called for “meaningful action” to prevent such shootings but did not say what it should be. One of the few longstanding women in our U.S. Senate, Diane Feinstein (CA), co-sponsored an assault weapons ban that was signed into law in 1994. It expired 10 years later. In September 2012, Senator Feinstein announced that she would be introducing gun control legislation again in 2013.

In November 2012 alone, 2 million Americans attempted to buy guns legally. Since 2008, states have reduced mental health funding by $1.6 Billion. Most U.S. health insurance policies, for those who have health insurance, do not cover mental health treatment.

To make change in America, the will of the people, along with political leadership, is needed.

We all know this is complex, it is hard to talk about, and hard to come together around. What do you think the U.S. could and should do? What can women and men on Main Street do? What are you willing to do?  


On Wednesday, I’ll keep my promise and post:  a Holiday thank you, a request & a gift offer for you.  In the meantime, continued thoughts of peace and healing to the families of Sandy Hook victims — and to our nation.

Interested in facts on guns and mass shootings in the United States? Here’s a compliation of data:



  1. Diane Nassir says:

    I don’t know what to do–I am totally helpless–I am 69 years old and have been witness to this brutality in my culture for a very long time. I appreciate your taking a step forward in this national dialogue–that is what is called for–a national dialogue. I have witnessed this in our nation regarding African-American civil rights, women’s rights, and to end the war in Vietnam, and we need it now. I threw myself over the barricades for peace in the 1960s and 1970s but I don’t know how to proceed now. I believe we must all take a stand against the NRA and the selling of clips of bullets and machine guns. That issue is a starting point by which we can perhaps engage in a national dialogue.

    • Dear Diane,
      Thank you so much for your comments and your wisdom. I admire so much that you’re able to draw upon all the actions you’ve taken in the past. And, I feel so sad that you, an activist, feels powerless today. National dialogue does seem to be swirling, again, as it did after each of these tragedies — perhaps seeing the cherub faces of the dead this time will make a difference? Perhaps the fact that it clearly moved our President will make a difference? Perhaps the fact that NRA member, Senator Machin from W.V. admits it is time to have dialogue about assault weapons is a positive sign?

      One thing I know for sure, action is the anedote to powerlessness. The power of social media holds possibilities; I signed an e-petition already. We have seen the power these petitions and social media outcries have had this century and it is something we can do from our homes. One of our Mainstreet Sisters, Marybeth, talked with me about picking just ONE thing to focus on when she felt overwhelmed in MI by all the poverty and despair. She chose diapers. Perhaps each one of us can chose one thing? Get active around that one thing?

      Sending hugs and all my very best to you.

  2. Diane Nassir says:

    Sorry I am so late in responding to you–thank you for your caring words. I sign petitions now, all over the Internet. That is about all I can handle at this point.
    NEVER stop the fight Jone, you are an angel!

  3. Diane,
    Our petition signing WILL make a difference! See the video wrap-up from last year; moved me to tears and seems our keyboards now hold power. Sending huge hugs!!

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