Parents of Sandy Hook shooting victim Ana Marquez Greene struggle to get over their loss on her birthday (VIDEO)
Ana Grace Marquez-Green would have been 7 years old today if her life had not been cut short by the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School last year. Ana's family posted a heart-wrenching, moving tribute on Facebook today.
In honor of Ana's life, we invite you to celebrate with family or friends today. Reach out to a neighbor, coworker or classmate. Perform a random act of kindness. Wear something purple or sparkly. Read with a child. Crank up the music, eat second dessert, dance like nobody's watching. Call your leaders. Pray for our country. Pray for common sense solutions. Pray for a love revolution.
A child dying before a parent is just unnatural in and of itself, but a child being slaughtered is unfathomable. It leaves parents, siblings, family, friends, and community reeling. How do you ever recover from such a senseless act of violence? The moving tribute on Ana's tribute page continues...
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Ana's family also write:
Seven years ago I gave birth to the most amazing sweet caramel princess. Less than four months ago, she was executed in her classroom. This photo is our final picture together taken at dinner on December 13th.
Thank you for loving and supporting us. Thank you for not letting Ana's memory fade away. Thank you for your cards and letters both to us and to Washington. Thank you for reminding us that love does win.
Happy first birthday in heaven to our princess of peace. Our princess for 6 and 1/2 years. Jesus' princess for eternity.
Nelba, Jimmy and Isaiah
Along with the beautiful words, Ana's family shared the last photo Ana took with her mother.
On December 14, Adam Lanza went to Sandy Hook Elementary School and opened fire. Nearly four months may have passed since the tragic shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, but the pain left behind by such tragedy endures. Parents, such as Ana's, devastated by the loss of their children in the Newtown shooting share how they are coping with the pain.
Parents who lost children in the Newtown shooting have shared how their lives have forever changed and how they struggle to keep the memories of their slain children alive. All of the parents want to cling on to and treasure the memories they have. Some parents have left their child's room untouched, others treasure articles of clothing like dirty socks or a jacket that belonged to their little one, and many see signs or messages from their departed children in everyday occurrences.
All the children left behind siblings who also struggle with the loss. Understanding death at such a young age has got to be difficult.
I find it touching and inspirational that during a time that is so difficult these families are sharing their stories because, yes, these stories are tragic, but they are also uplifting. These families are focusing on love. Many have started charities in their children's names. They also tell of the outpouring of support and love they have received. They also want to focus on the kindness of their children and build a legacy from it. In the words of Robbie Parker, the father of Emilie Parker: "If you want to know what you can do, then make a commitment to yourself to be a better person--because Emilie was always making sure she was the best person she could be."