President Obama Meets With Victims' Families of Sandy Hook Tragedy

Celebrity News Dec. 17, 2012 AT 9:00AM
President Barack Obama speaks at an interfaith vigil for the shooting victims from Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 16, 2012 at Newtown High School in Newtown, Connecticut. President Barack Obama speaks at an interfaith vigil for the shooting victims from Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 16, 2012 at Newtown High School in Newtown, Connecticut. Credit: Stephen Dunn-Pool/Getty

During an emotional vigil in Newtown, CT on Sunday Dec. 16, President Barack Obama offered comfort to families grieving from the deaths of 20 children and eight adults killed on Friday's mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Obama, 51, vowed to employ "whatever power this office holds" to avoid another such tragedy.

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"We can't accept events like this as routine," he said of gunman Adam Lanza's rampage. "Are we really prepared to say that we're powerless in the face of such carnage? That the politics are too hard?"

"We're not doing enough, and we will have to change," he added, hinting at potential amendments to the country's gun control laws.

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"We will be told that the causes of such violence are complex, and it is true. No single law, no set of laws can eliminate evil from the world or prevent every senseless act of violence in our society. But that can't be an excuse for inaction. Surely we can do better than this," he continued, noting similar recent tragedies in Aurora, Colo. and Oak Creek, WI.

Said the father of Malia, 14, an Sasha, 11: "I can only hope that it helps for you to know that you are not alone in your grief."

He concluded the televised speech by naming the children who passed away after Friday's tragedy.

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Let the little children come to me, Jesus said, and do not hinder them -- for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”

"Charlotte. Daniel. Olivia. Josephine. Ana. Dylan. Madeleine. Catherine. Chase. Jesse. James. Grace. Emilie. Jack. Noah. Caroline. Jessica. Benjamin. Avielle. Allison . . .God has called them all home. For those of us who remain, let us find the strength to carry on and make our country worthy of their memory."

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