Giants Honor Sandy Hook Community With On-Field Pregame Ceremony
Nearly 400 students, parents and faculty members from Sandy Hook Elementary School were “the centerpiece of a powerful pre-game ceremony” before Sunday's Eagles-Giants at MetLife Stadium, according to Pat Leonard of the N.Y. DAILY NEWS. The honorary guests “formed two lines to welcome Big Blue and visiting Philadelphia Eagles players, then joined hands and lined the perimeter of the field in a moment of silence to honor the 26 victims of the Newtown, Conn. school massacre” (NYDAILYNEWS.com, 12/30). In Hartford, Mike Anthony notes Sandy Hook students, parents and faculty “boarded buses, chartered by the Giants, about 8 a.m. at Newtown High School, then made the 85-mile journey.” It was a “moving pregame ceremony, the crowd cheering the announcement of the Newtown contingent and then observing a moment of silence” (HARTFORD COURANT, 12/31). In New Jersey, Andrew Gross notes a “convoy of nine buses brought the families to the media entrance and they were greeted by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell in the bowels of the stadium” (Bergen RECORD, 12/31). Giants coach Tom Coughlin said, "We certainly wanted to honor and respect them. We wanted to try to do our part to help them in the healing process. I hope they left with some inspiration today" (AP, 12/30). Giants S Antrel Rolle: “Just seeing those kids puts things in perspective. Life is extremely short and you have to live it to the fullest and unfortunately a lot of those kids weren’t able to even enjoy their Christmas for this year” (N.Y. POST, 12/31). Meanwhile, the Bills “affixed a ‘WWFD’ decal on the back of their helmets for Sunday's game against the New York Jets to honor two fallen West Webster volunteer firefighters” (AP, 12/30).