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    Posted December 27, 2012 by
    Beauregard, Alabama
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Newtown school shooting: Thoughts and tributes

    Local Business Helps with Sandy Hook Elementary Tribute


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     iReporter TAGRACIA, a retired Army veteran, says he was inspired to build crosses for the victims of the Newtown, CT school shooting to let them know that the nation is here for them in their time of need.
    - Echerneff, CNN iReport producer

    Local business owner Billy B. Allen and Andrew Gracia of Magnolia Storage & Flea Market in Opelika, Alabama decided to help with the remembrance of the tragedy that took place in Newtown, CT at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Mr. Gracia got the idea from watching how others across the nation were paying tribute to the 20 students and 6 adults who were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
    With Mr. Gracia having an Elementary Teaching Certificate with the state of Alabama this tragedy hit close to home with him. So he got in contact with Beauregard Elementary School Principle Kathy Ledbetter and offered her the donation of 26 crosses to be placed at BES. Mrs. Ledbetter accepted the donation and notified her student’s parents in a letter. In the letter she let the parents know that 26 crosses were being placed at the school so they would be able to answer any questions that their children might have.
    “This is a way for our community to pay its respect to those who were killed and a way for us to heal with the rest of the nation. Although we were not directly affected by this tragedy we all have children/grandchildren of the same age” stated Mr. Gracia.
    Army Veteran Andrew Gracia and Air Force Veteran Billy B. Allen had future Infantry Soldier’s Private Nicholas R. Homan and Private Cameron T. Crawford both of Beauregard construct the 26 crosses. Nicholas, Cameron, Drew Gracia and Andrew Gracia put the crosses in front of BES on Wednesday December 19, 2012.

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