independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

British boy feared among victims

A woman pays her respects at a makeshift memorial outside St Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church in Newtown, Connecticut (AP)

US president Barack Obama is due to attend a memorial service for the victims of the Sandy Hook school massacre, as it was reported that one of the 20 child victims was a British schoolboy.

Dylan Hockley, six, one of eight boys and 12 girls in First Grade gunned down in cold blood by Adam Lanza, is believed to have been born in Britain and only moved to Newtown, Connecticut with English father Ian, American mother Nicole and his elder brother Jake in January 2011.

In a feature for the local paper the Newtown Bee, believed to have been published earlier this year, Mrs Hockley said they lived in England for 18 years, where her husband worked for IBM, before moving to the Connecticut town, where they were "happy and comfortable".

"Newtown is a wonderful place to live and we're looking forward to being here a long, long time," she told the paper.

She added: "Being with my children is much more rewarding than I thought it would be, coming from a big career background. Spending time with my children gives me a lot of joy."

In one of America's worst school shootings, Lanza killed 20 children, all first graders aged six or seven, who were shot up to 11 times each.

He also killed six women, including school head Dawn Hochsprung, before turning the gun on himself. His mother Nancy was also found shot dead at their home in the town.

Mr Obama's visit to Newtown for an interfaith vigil later will be the fourth time he has travelled to a city after a mass shooting.

The bloodbath brought despair and horror to the New England community, 60 miles north east of New York City, preparing for the Christmas holidays.

Press Association

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