Newtown's year: Horror, grief and tough choices

NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) — It's been a painful and frenetic year for all of Newtown, Conn.

From horror came despair and, soon, attempts at moving beyond one of the nation's deadliest school shootings. There were the logistics of recovery and decisions about whether to raze the school where so many perished.

The Labor Day parade marched on, and as foliage turned red and yellow, small survivors filed back into school with their parents' shaky assurances they would be safe.

Now, with winter on their doorstep once again, the people of Newtown are bracing for the day everyone here simply calls 12/14.

Before Saturday's anniversary, townspeople plan to gather in a park for the annual tree lighting ceremony. The event is usually both fun and solemn, and surely will be again this year.

As always, a big crowd is expected as Newtown, in its way, takes another step forward.

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