President Barack Obama gave a quick wave Sunday as he exited Air Force One at the Bradley Air National Guard Base in East Granby, on his way to Newtown.
U.S. Reps. Rosa DeLauro and John Larson accompanied Obama on the flight from Washington. They all headed to Newtown in the presidential motorcade to meet with the families of victims in the second deadliest school shooting in the nation’s history.
Later in the evening, Obama was give a speech he had written at a private vigil. He was editing his remarks with his speech writer, Cody Keenan, during the flight.
No news media were allowed near Newtown High School where the vigil will take place around 7 p.m., not far from Sandy Hook Elementary. Hundreds of people began lining up outside the high school hours before Obama’s arrival.
The Red Cross was handing out blankets to those standing outside the high school in a steady drizzle.
It’s unclear who has been invited to attend the vigil, but residents from Newtown and outside of town were anxious to hear the president.
“I’m hoping to hear support. It’s nice to know he cares,“ Alan Rosenberger of Sandy Hook said as he waited in line.
Repeating a line that has been reiterated numerous times since Friday’s shooting, “Things like that don’t happen here — it happens always somewhere else,” Rosenberger said.
His wife, Annette, said the family moved to the town for the school system.
“A place we love so much has been tarnished,” Mrs. Rosenberger said.
The funerals for three of the students murdered Friday will be held Monday.
Hugh McQuaid contributed to this report.