Neighbor describes taking 6 Sandy Hook school children survivors into his home

December 18, 2012

NEWTOWN, Conn. -  Gene Rosen had just finished feeding his cats and was heading from his home near Sandy Hook Elementary school to a diner Friday morning when he saw six small children sitting in a neat semicircle at the end of his driveway.

A school bus driver was standing over them, telling them things would be all right. It was about 9:30 a.m., and the children, he discovered, had just run from the school to escape a gunman.

"We can't go back to school," one little boy told Rosen. "Our teacher is dead. Mrs. Soto; we don't have a teacher."

Rosen, a 69-year-old retired psychologist, took the four girls and two boys into his home, and over the next few hours gave them toys, listened to their stories and called their frantic parents.

Rosen said he had heard the staccato sound of gunfire about 15 minutes earlier but dismissed it as an obnoxious hunter in the nearby woods.

"I had no idea what had happened," Rosen said. "I couldn't take that in."

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