LILBURN, Ga - As the nation paused to honor the victims of the Newton, Connecticut massacre, a Lilburn Church chimed in using bells with a close connection to grief.
About a dozen members of All Saints Lutheran Church in Lilburn gathered Friday morning as the church bells chimed twenty six times for the twenty children and six adults who were murdered at Newtown's Sandy Hook Elementary School last week.
With each chime, Pastor Kim Stover read the names of the victims.
Amy Cauble, a second grade teacher in Lilburn, couldn't hold back the tears.
"You can't help but think what if it was me, my students," said Cauble. "You start looking around your classroom thinking, where could I hide them?"
All across the nation, churches and government buildings paused for a moment of silence one week after the second deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.
At All Saints Lutheran Church, the bells that rang for the victims has been singing a sad song for fourteen years. That's how long it's been since 16-year-old Loren Larson lost his life in a car accident. His parents donated the bells in his memory.
Pastor Kim Stover spoke with Larson's father prior to Friday's ceremony.
"His father spoke of the hole created in one's life that is never filled with the loss of a child," said Pastor Stover. "With that he shed a tear, even all these years later."
In Athens, students rang the Chapel bell at the University of Georgia.
"I've done a lot of private mourning," said graduate student Leslie Hale. "All of that has felt somehow not quite complete."
5-year-old Max Stover listened to the bells of All-Saints Lutheran Church in the arms of his father. He knows that children his age were among the victims in Newtown.
"He was listening to the Pastor read the names," said Max's father Josh. "He has friends with the same name, and that made it real to him. He would look at me and wonder if that's who we were talking about."