Local parents react to horrifying Connecticut school shooting

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Parents in Central Pennsylvania are reacting to the horrifying shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut, holding their children tighter tonight and wondering how they’ll explain this all to them.

“I’ve got small kids. It’s hard. Your mind goes there. You think about what if that was my kid,” said an emotional Virginia Irvine, as she waited to pick up her daughter from school in Red Lion, York County.

That thought went through the mind of every parent in America, upon hearing the news of the unspeakable tragedy. More than two dozen are confirmed dead, including the shooter and at least 20 children.

“I just sat in my living room and cried,” said Julianne Peters, the mother of a young daughter. “It’s such a tragedy. You send your kid to school, thinking that you know, they’re going to be safe and you give them a kiss and you just never ever imagine this happening. I mean, my heart goes out to those families.”

These parents and so many others are now faced with the task of trying to explain the tragedy to their children. Those with very young kids still unsure if they’ll bring it up at all.

“You’re stumping me because I don’t know, I don’t know what you would say,” said Kim Johnson, whose granddaughter is a first grader. “You just try to ease their minds as to what, what happened. I don’t know. I don’t know what I would say to her.”

“You want your kids to think like the world is a good place,” added Irvine. “You want them to think that for as long as they possibly can. No, I hope, that I really would rather her not know.”