Victims of Sandy Hook school massacre are named

All 20 children who died in a shooting in Connecticut were aged between six and seven

Connecticut police have released the names of the 26 people gunned down in the rampage at a primary school.

Of the 20 children who were shot dead at Sandy Hook Elementary School, eight were boys and 12 were girls.

All the children were aged six or seven.

All six adults killed at the school were women.

The full list is:

Charlotte Bacon, 6

Daniel Barden, 7

Rachel Davino, 29

Olivia Engel, 6

Josephine Gay, 7

Ana Marquez-Greene, 6

Dylan Hockley, 6

Dawn Hochsprung, 47

Madeleine Hsu, 6

Catherine Hubbard, 6

Chase Kowalski, 7

Jesse Lewis, 6

James Mattioli, 6

Grace McDonnell, 7

Anne Marie Murphy, 52

Emilie Parker, 6

Jack Pinto, 6

Noah Pozner, 6

Caroline Previdi, 6

Jessica Rekos, 6

Avielle Richman, 6

Lauren Rousseau, 30

Mary Sherlach, 56

Victoria Soto, 27

Benjamin Wheeler, 6

Allison Wyatt, 6

Here are details of some victims of the massacre:

:: VICTORIA SOTO

She beams in photos. Her enthusiasm was evident. She was doing, those who knew her say, what she loved.

And now, Victoria Soto is being called a hero.

Though details of the 27-year-old teacher's death remain unclear, her name has been invoked again and again as a portrait of selflessness and humanity among unfathomable evil.

A cousin, Jim Wiltsie, told ABC News that investigators told his family she was killed while shielding her students from danger. She reportedly hid some students in a bathroom or closet, ensuring they were safe.

"She was trying to shield, get her children into a closet and protect them from harm," Mr Wiltsie told ABC. "And by doing that, put herself between the gunman and the children."

Soto's goal was simply to be a teacher.

"She lost her life doing what she loved," Mr Wiltsie said.

:: ANA MARQUEZ-GREENE

A year ago, six-year-old Ana Marquez-Greene was revelling in holiday celebrations with her extended family on her first trip to Puerto Rico.

The girl's grandmother, Elba Marquez, said the child's family moved to Connecticut just two months ago, drawn from Canada, in part, by Sandy Hook's pristine reputation. The grandmother's brother, Jorge Marquez, is mayor of a Puerto Rican town and said the child's nine-year-old brother was also at the school, but he escaped safely.

Elba Marquez had just visited the new home over the Thanksgiving holiday and finds herself perplexed by what happened.

"It was a beautiful place, just beautiful," she said. "What happened does not match up with the place where they live."

:: DAWN HOCHSPRUNG

Dawn Hochsprung's pride in Sandy Hook Elementary was clear. She regularly tweeted photos from her time as school principal. Just this week, it was an image of students rehearsing for their winter concert.

She viewed her school as a model, telling The Newtown Bee newspaper in 2010: "I don't think you could find a more positive place to bring students to every day."

She had worked to make Sandy Hook a place of safety, too, and in October, the 47-year-old Hochsprung shared a picture of the school's evacuation drill with the message: "Safety first."

When the unthinkable came, she was ready to defend. Officials said she died while lunging at the gunman in an attempt to overtake him.

"She had an extremely likeable style about her," said Gerald Stomski, first selectman of Woodbury, where Hochsprung lived and had taught. "She was an extremely charismatic principal while she was here."

:: MARY SHERLACH

When the shots rang out, school psychologist Mary Sherlach, 56, threw herself into the danger.

Janet Robinson, the superintendent of Newtown Public Schools, said Sherlach and the school's principal ran toward the gunman. They lost their lives, rushing toward him.

Even as Ms Sherlach neared retirement, her job at Sandy Hook was one she loved. Those who knew her called her a wonderful neighbour, a beautiful person, a dedicated educator.

Her son-in-law, Eric Schwartz, told the South Jersey Times that Ms Sherlach relished helping children overcome their problems. She had planned to leave work early on Friday, he said. In a news conference today, he told reporters the loss was devastating, but that Sherlach was doing what she loved.

"Mary felt like she was doing God's work," he said, "working with the children."

:: LAUREN ROUSSEAU

Lauren Rousseau had spent years working as a substitute teacher and doing other jobs. So she was thrilled when she finally realised her goal this year to become a full-time teacher at Sandy Hook.

"It was the best year of her life," her mother, Teresa Rousseau, told the Danbury News-Times, where she is a copy editor.

Ms Rousseau has been called gentle, spirited and active. She was a lover of music, dance and theatre.

"I'm used to having people die who are older," her mother said, "not the person whose room is up over the kitchen.

:: OLIVIA ENGEL

The images of six-year-old Olivia Engel will live beyond her short lifetime. There she is visiting Santa Claus or feasting on a slice of birthday cake. There's the one of her swinging a pink baseball bat, and another posing on a boat. In some, she models a pretty white dress, in others she makes a silly face.

Dan Merton, a long-time friend of Olivia's family, said he could never forget her, and he has much to say when he thinks of her.

"She loved attention," he said. "She had perfect manners, perfect table manners. She was the teacher's pet, the line leader."

On Friday, Mr Merton said, she was excited to go to school and return home and make a gingerbread house.

"Her only crime," he said, "is being a wiggly, smiley six-year-old."

:: ANNE MARIE MURPHY

A happy soul. A good mother, wife and daughter. Artistic, fun-loving, witty and hardworking.

Remembering their 52-year-old teacher daughter, Anne Marie Murphy's parents had no shortage of adjectives to offer Newsday. When news of the shooting broke, Hugh and Alice McGowan waited for word of their daughter as hour by hour ticked by. And then it came.

Authorities told the couple their daughter was a hero who helped shield some of her students from the rain of bullets. As the grim news arrived, the victim's mother reached for her rosary.

"You don't expect your daughter to be murdered," her father told the newspaper. "It happens on TV. It happens elsewhere."

:: CHASE KOWALSKI

Chase Kowalski, seven, was always outside, playing in the back yard, riding his bicycle. Last week, he was visiting neighbour Kevin Grimes, telling him about completing - and winning - his first mini-triathlon.

"You couldn't think of a better child," Mr Grimes said.

Mr Grimes's own five children all attend Sandy Hook too. Cars lined up outside the Kowalskis' ranch home on Saturday, and a state trooper's car idled in the driveway. Mr Grimes spoke of the boy only in the present tense.

:: EMILIE PARKER

Quick to cheer up those in need of a smile, six-year-old Emilie Parker never missed a chance to draw a picture or make a card.

Her father Robbie fought back tears as he described the beautiful, blonde, always-smiling girl who loved to try new things, except food.

Mr Parker, one of the first parents to talk publicly about his loss, expressed no animosity for the gunman, even as he struggled to explain the death to his other two children, aged three and four. He is sustained by the fact that the world is better for having had Emilie in it.

"I'm so blessed to be her dad," he said.

:: NANCY LANZA

The gunman's 52-year-old mother was known simply for the game nights she hosted and the Christmas decorations she put up at her house. Now Ms Lanza is known as her son's first victim.

Authorities say Lanza gunned his mother down before killing 26 others at Sandy Hook. The two shared a home in a well-to-do Newtown neighbourhood, but details were slow to emerge of who she was and what might have led her son to carry out such horror.

Police Chief Donald Briggs Jr, of Kingston, New Hampshire, said Ms Lanza once lived in the community and was a kind, considerate and loving person. The former stockbroker at John Hancock in Boston was well-respected.

Court records show Ms Lanza and her ex-husband, Peter Lanza, filed for divorce in 2008. He lives in Stamford and is a tax director at General Electric. A neighbour, Rhonda Cullens, said she knew Ms Lanza from get-togethers she had hosted to play Bunco, a dice game. She said her neighbour enjoyed gardening.

"She was a very nice lady," Ms Cullens said. "She was just like all the rest of us in the neighbourhood, just a regular person."

:: CATHERINE HUBBARD

A family friend turned reporters away from the house but six-year-old Catherine's parents released a statement expressing gratitude to emergency responders and for the support of the community.

"We are greatly saddened by the loss of our beautiful daughter, Catherine Violet, and our thoughts and prayers are with the other families who have been affected by this tragedy," Jennifer and Matthew Hubbard said. "We ask that you continue to pray for us and the other families who have experienced loss in this tragedy."

:: MADELEINE HSU

Dr Matthew Velsmid was at six-year-old Madeleine's house on Saturday, tending to her stricken family. He said the family did not want to comment.

Dr Velsmid said that after hearing of the shooting, he went to the triage area to provide medical assistance but there were no injuries to treat.

"We were waiting for casualties to come out and there was nothing. There was no need unfortunately," he said. "This is the darkest thing I've ever walked into by far."

Dr Velsmid's daughter, who attends another school, lost three of her friends in the massacre.

AP

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Sport
Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
footballManchester United set to loan out Januzaj to make room for Bale - if a move for the Welshman firms up
News
Young Winstone: His ‘tough-guy’ image is a misconception
people
Arts and Entertainment
Ellie Levenson’s The Election book demystifies politics for children
bookNew children's book primes the next generation for politics
News
Outspoken: Alexander Fury, John Rentoul, Ellen E Jones and Katy Guest
newsFrom the Scottish referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell Williams' “Happy” was the most searched-for song lyric of 2014
musicThe power of song never greater, according to our internet searches
News
i100
Sport
Tim Sherwood raises his hand after the 1-0 victory over Stoke
footballFormer Tottenham boss leads list of candidates to replace Neil Warnock
Arts and Entertainment
L to R: Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Captain America (Chris Evans) & Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) in Avengers Assemble
film
News
Nigel Farage celebrates with a pint after early local election results in the Hoy and Helmet pub in South Benfleet in Essex
peopleHe has shaped British politics 'for good or ill'
Arts and Entertainment
Sink the Pink's 2013 New Year's Eve party
musicFour of Britain's top DJs give their verdict on how to party into 2015
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
News
Nigel Farage: 'I don't know anybody in politics as poor as we are'
i100
Voices
Strictly Come Dancing was watched by 6.9m viewers
voicesIt has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Roffey says: 'All of us carry shame and taboo around about our sexuality. But I was determined not to let shame stop me writing my memoir.'
books
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Selby Jennings: VP/SVP Credit Quant- NY- Investment Bank

Not specified: Selby Jennings: VP/SVP Credit Quant Top tier investment bank i...

Ashdown Group: Senior Marketing Executive- City of London, Old Street

£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior Marketing Executiv...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager

£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An international organisa...

Ashdown Group: Internal Recruiter -Rugby, Warwickshire

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Internal Recruiter -Rugby, Warwicksh...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015