Sadness and Hope


I was looking through the White House Flikr page in search of a photo for an illustration I was working on when I came across the above photo of President Obama (cropping and frame is my doing). I loved the picture immediately…and even more so when I found out who the children were.

“Two days after the shootings at Newtown, the President traveled to Connecticut to meet with the victims’ families and give remarks at a prayer vigil. The President spent hours greeting family members. Difficult as that was for everyone, the one moment that helped sooth the pain was when he posed for a photo with the siblings and cousins of Emilie Parker, one of the 20 children who died that day in Newtown. I see both sadness and hope in this photograph, and I know after a lot of tears that day, it meant so much to the President that everyone was able to smile for a moment in this family photo. Thanks to the Parker family for allowing us to show this photograph publicly.” (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

I don’t know these children but I wish I could pick up each and every one of them and give them a hug.

Sadness and hope. Doesn’t that say it all?


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10 thoughts on “Sadness and Hope

  1. Mario: A wonderful and touching post. How thoughtful of you. This is so truthful. This photo is a keeper! Rich

  2. Children continue to amaze me with their innocence and resilience. Their innocence protects them from the horrors of this world and their resilience shows us that there will be better days.

    The smiles are moments in time when they radiate the beauty of a better future because they will be the ones who will demand a better plan on gun safety in America. My bet is on them.

  3. Of all the video, live shots and photos we saw on that tragic day, I too found solace in this one. Thanks for reminding us of the innocence of the young…although they’ll be asking the tough questions as time passes.
    I also recall the voices of the young children at the memorial service…a reminder that there will be a future…a safer and saner one, I hope.

  4. Beautiful, Mario — thank you for sharing. Smiles in the midst of unimaginable heartbreak. They are all precious, including the genuine caring adult surrounded by the adoring children!

  5. This President connects with kids so well. Children know when someone is sincere. He wears his heart on his sleeve when it comes to children.

  6. I have to admit, the tragedy still has an effect on me that I haven’t shaken yet. Just thinking about it brings me to tears. I don’t think anything since 9/11 has caused me to hurt so much, even though I was not connected to those children or that town in anyway.

    It is good to see the smiles on those kid’s faces, after their sibling and cousin was killed in such a way. I don’t know how anyone could even tell them about the tragedy, let alone what words to use, explaining it to such sensitive and innocent ears.

  7. It’s always heartwarming to see how babies and kids respond to this President. The same with the First Lady.

  8. Children can sense when someone is as sincere about their love as President Obama is. Bless you Mr. President for being such a ray of hope in a dark world.

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