Like most people, 10th grader Janelle Robbins was devastated by what happened, and felt she had to do something. “Me and my friend, we wanted to do Beanie Babies, and like, put little notes on them and send them to the children. And we went to Mr. D and he’s like, how about candles? And he set up all the times, the dates, and we just kind of went from there and started selling them at lunch,” Robbins said.
On Tuesday, the student’s handmade candles went on sale for just a dollar. Before the afternoon was over, they were out; however, the demand was still high. It sent production into overdrive, with the proceeds going to the families of the victims.
Guidance Counselor Fredrick Deileone admitted some students had a hard time coming back to school after Friday. Some even voiced their own concern about coming back to school in Palmer. “What I tell to them is to just, you know, focus on the holiday, your friends, your family, your loved ones, think about these people, and care about these people, and try to be safe wherever you are, wherever you go,” Mr. D shared. “A lot of my friends and I were pretty upset and my mom wanted me home schooled. We shouldn’t have to be scared to go to school,” Robbins added.
Nonetheless, students and teachers alike say they do feel safe at Palmer High.
With Sandy Hook on everyone’s mind, the candles have inspired one teacher to buy 80 of them. “I’ve gone home each night thinking of what to do to make a difference. I decided this morning I was going to buy enough candles to give each every one of my students a candle, and I was going to include one on every gift that I give this season,” Sheila Browne said.
As we move closer to Christmas some inspirational words for those in Newtown, CT. “To just keep going forward, even though it’s really hard, keep going on,” said 10th Grader Mariah Boaite.
They won’t be alone. Everyone that buys a candle, will light one at 6pm on Christmas Eve, remembering in solidarity those who lost their lives at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
The candles will be on sale through Friday. They’re expecting to raise about $500.