The recent massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary school has effected every person differently. But it’s not just American’s reeling after 26 people were senselessly murdered, in fact one superstar athlete was forced to reflect on being a survivor of a devastating school shooting nearly 17 years ago.
When the Sandy Hook shooting happened, I instantly went back to reading about a similar shooting Dublane Primary school in central Scotland back in 1996. In that shooting, former scout leader Thomas Hamilton entered Dublane Primary and murdered 16 people, most of them children around the age of the Sandy Hook victims.
World No. 3 Andy Murray was an eight year old student at Dublane Primary when the shooting happened.
Murray has been training in Miami recently, and sent his thoughts out all the victims of the tragedy this weekend, while also reflecting on his own experience with tragedy.
“My heart goes out to all those poor children, their families and the community in Newtown in Connecticut, so, so sad.” Murray said via a Facebook post this weekend.
In 2009, Murray’s mother was asked by ESPN about that fateful day back in 1996. From hearing about the tragedy to the horrible feeling of not knowing if your child was okay, Judy Murray said it still is one of the worst days of her life.
“Absolutely horrendous. The worst. The worst thing you could ever imagine having to go through in your life,” she told ESPN. “Sitting, waiting and not knowing if your child is alive or dead — you can’t imagine what that was like. It was quite horrific.”
Murray also published an autobiography that year, and in it he recollects that he was familiar with Hamilton prior to the shooting. He said that he survived by hiding under a desk with his brother, singing songs to himself to keep calm.
The shooting remains a landmark case in Dublane and with the recent tragedy in Sandy Hook, the victims and the survivors are not alone in what they’re feeling. There’s also hope, that if Murray could come out of a terrible tragedy to become a global icon, that the children forever scarred by a monster will one day be able to come out of this tragedy on top.