DOVER, Del.- A bell rang out 26 times Friday morning in the Connecticut capitol building. It was once for each victim of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown. The same thing happened all over the country to honor the victims of last Friday's school shooting, including in Delaware.
It was the last day before winter break at South Dover Elementary School. There were games, stories and clocks - ticking toward 9:30, when for a few moments all the fun was on hold. Principal Michelle Duke's voice came over the PA system announcing the moment of silence.
"We wanted to - with dignity and respect - remember what happened in an elementary school very much like our own," she said.
Duke's announcement only mentioned Connecticut, though, not the shooting.
"Those who knew - they knew what we were remembering, what we were dignifying. Those were still innocent were allowed to remain innocent."
Then, there were 26 chimes as students, many about the same age as the victims at Sandy Hook stood silently.
That was inside. Outside, flags at half-staff blew in the wind.
The governor's office says that a lot of places with public bells and sirens took part throughout Delaware, including the old statehouse on The Green in Dover. It also includes the city's fire department.
"Today at 9:30 we sounded our fire siren in memory of the tragic events," said Capt. Matt Carey. "It's small way of us saying thank you for the hard work of the first responders and to honor the victims as best we could."
Sounds and silence, linking Delaware and Connecticut, for more than a moment.
"It's very unifying," Duke said. "I think it's very comforting, I think, to know that we're all connected in some way."
Late Friday, state Sen. Dave Lawson announced he wants emergency - or "panic" - exits in classrooms across the state. He will introduce a resolution to examine the cost. Lawson believes "panic" exits would be safer than lockdowns in Delaware.
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