I, like the rest of the country, spent most of the day watching the various news channels and listening to every update intently. As the major news outlets began to have their on-air personalities broadcast from the scene most used the same backdrop, the school’s soccer field. The more I watched, the more I began to focus on the field.
The field was empty. The goals stood idle. There were no children playing. No goals being scored. No goals being celebrated. No goals being saved. No shouting. No cheers. No arguments. A field more often associated with fun provided the backdrop for the reporting of an event that was pure evil.
Adam Lanza walked through the front entryway of Sandy Hook Elementary School at approximately 9:30 a.m. Ten minutes later he had murdered six staff members and 20 students all ages six or seven. He then took the coward’s way out and turned his gun on himself.
The 20 children will never again set foot on the Sandy Hook soccer field. They will never again kick a ball for fun. They will never again play the beautiful game. They will never celebrate a state championship like the Newtown High School girls’ team did last month. They are players lost to the game forever. The game has lost future administrators, coaches and fans. The game has lost 20 future parents and with them a generation of Newtown soccer players will never be born.
I look at my four young children, three of whom are in elementary school and my wife, a kindergarten teacher, and I think of the soccer memories we have created in our short time together as a family. I feel sad for the 26 victims that they will never have the opportunity to create the same memories.
They will never travel to tournaments in San Antonio or Seattle and visit The Alamo or Mount Rainier respectively. They will never travel to an elite tournament in Florida and visit Disney World or Universal Studios. They will never travel to London to watch an English Premier League game or to Gillette Stadium to watch the United States men play Spain. They will never have the chance to escort the United States Women’s Olympic team out at Rentschler Field against Germany.
We will never find out if Daniel, Dylan, Chase, Jesse, James, Jack, Noah or Benjamin could have been the next Landon Donovan or Clint Dempsey.
We will never find out if Charlotte, Olivia, Josephine, Ana, Madeline, Catherine, Grace, Emilie, Caroline, Jessica, Avielle, or Allison could have been the next Alex Morgan or Abby Wambach.
Rachel, Dawn, Anne Marie, Lauren, Mary and Victoria will never see their 20 students grow up and become the adults they were shaping them to be.
I come back to the empty soccer field beside the Sandy Hook Elementary School. The goals stood idle. There were no children playing. No goals being scored. No goals being celebrated. No goals being saved. No shouting. No cheers. No arguments.
The game was moved. God is now refereeing a 10 v 10 match in Heaven with six fans cheering them on.