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Chase Kowalski, aged six, one of the victims at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, United States, who was shot by Adam Lanza, 20, and died in hospital. Lanza used three weapons to shoot 26 people dead, 20 of them schoolchildren aged 5 to 10, and then shot himself dead on Friday. His mother Nancy was also found dead
Three weeks ago, Becky and Stephen Kowalski experienced the worst thing parents can deal with when their 7-year-old son, Chase, was killed in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.
Through their mourning, they are showing remarkable strength and doing everything they can to keep his memory alive through a fund they set up that will help many others.
The family has set up the Chase Kowalski Memorial Fund.
Becky said one plan is to build a community center for the town of Newtown, but the family does not want to stop there.
"If I can get enough funding, I'd love to see one in every town in the United States,” Becky said. “This isn't solely for Chase. He is not the only person that perished. He is one of 26. In any way we can honor my son, and all of those teachers and aides, we'll do it.”
The Kowalskis said they are convinced that Chase is guiding them to move forward and Becky believes her young son told her what to do within hours after the shooting on Friday, Dec. 14.
“Friday was horrible. It was a nightmare. Because a friend told me she thought she saw Chase, I was able to deal with that and give the information needed, so that he was identified. I took a pill that night to sleep. Saturday was a blur. I said, ‘I can do this without a pill.’ So I was clearheaded. I went to bed and he came to me, in the middle of the night and he explained to me what we would experience,” Becky said. “And then he showed me the little fish from finding Nemo, and how they have to work together to make a big fish -- to change to make something happen. And I saw the fish coming together as a whole. And then he just filled my heart with peace, and I was changed.”
“We're getting through it. It's hard. Every day, I go around and look. Definitely hard,” Stephen Kowalkski said.