The parents of a boy killed in the Sandy HookÂ massacre revealed on Monday that they are selling their home because they cannotÂ bear to see the neighboring house of the man who shot dead their son.
Dylan Hockley, six, was one of 20 childrenÂ and six teaching staff who lost their lives when a gunman opened fire on SandyÂ Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut a little over a month ago.
His parents Ian and Nicole Hockley opened upÂ about the joy that Dylan, who had autism, had brought to their lives as theyÂ attended a gathering with other families to mark the one-month anniversary ofÂ the tragedy.
Mrs Hockley told CNN: ‘He was autistic but incrediblyÂ empathetic. He just wanted to have fun.’
Her husband Ian said that his son was a happyÂ child who would run to greet him every time he came home from work, shoutingÂ ‘Daddy!’
He added that his little boy would love toÂ play on the trampoline in their backyard and would insist that his father joinÂ him.
As the Hockleys try to come to terms with theÂ devastating loss of their son, they have decided to move house as driving pastÂ the home of gunman Adam Lanza is more than they can cope with eachÂ day.
Mrs Hockley said: ‘YouÂ can’t drive up your driveway everyÂ day and see the house of a person who tookÂ your son’s life and whoÂ brought so much pain to so many people.’
The couple plan to remain in Newtown whereÂ they moved with their two sons, Dylan andÂ eight-year-old Jake, from Hampshire in England two years ago.
Dylan’s older brother Jake is also strugglingÂ to come to terms with theÂ loss of his sibling and the many questions he has asÂ to why thisÂ happened.
One of the ways that the Hockley family isÂ coping is by fundraising in Dylan’s name for programs that support children withÂ autism and special needs.
Although the family have shielded themselvesÂ from much of what happened on December 14 at Sandy Hook, they have been broughtÂ comfort by the bravery of one of Dylan’s teachers.
Special education teacher Anne Marie Murphy,Â 52, died trying to shield her students from bullets and was found still cradlingÂ Dylan, whom she had tried to protect. TheÂ Hockleys previously paid tribute to the loving teacher.
‘We take great comfort in knowing that DylanÂ was not alone when he died, but was wrapped in the arms of his amazing aide,Â Anne Marie Murphy,’ they said.
‘Dylan loved Mrs. Murphy so much and pointedÂ at her picture on our refrigerator every day.’
The Hockleys joined other families and neighbors of children killed at Sandy Hook on Monday to launch an initiative to help curb gun violence in America.
One month after the shootings, the group,Â called Sandy Hook Promise, vowed at a press conference to transform publicÂ outrage into action to ‘make our communities and our nation a safer, betterÂ place’.
Several of the parents of childrenÂ slain inÂ the attack appeared on stage with the organizers, some makingÂ their firstÂ public appearances since the shooting, all holdingÂ photographs of their son orÂ daughter.
Mrs Hockley told the group: ‘There is noÂ quick-fix single action butÂ instead a multitude of interlinked actions that areÂ needed.’
The Newtown group offered no specificÂ solution or policy position, but co-founder Thomas Bittman said its aimÂ is toÂ drive a national conversation on three issues: gun ownership andÂ regulation,Â mental health, and school and public safety.