It is with a terrible sense of helplessness that I take the time to put these words to paper. My heart goes out to the victims and their families following the tragic events Friday in Connecticut. No mother or father drops their child off at school with any thought that it will be the last time they see them. Those of us in law enforcement are no stranger to tragedy, yet something like this shocks the conscience in ways unimaginable.

I ask that each and every one of us in our community take the time to remember these victims in our prayers, not only the young souls and their teachers, but their families, peers and a community that has been brought to its knees by this horrible act of violence. Do not search for someone to blame. The blame rests solely on the despicable man who carried out this senseless act.

I want to assure members of our community that the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, the Ottawa Police Department and the Wellsville Police Department are committed to the safety of our children and our schools. We continue to evaluate the safety of our schools and enhance our training and response to any threat we may perceive. Law enforcement regularly trains and works hand-in-hand with the school districts and their staffs to deter any violence in or around a school campus.

No one is really prepared for such a heinous act, but I can assure you that we will continue to make the safety of our children a top priority. I pray that ours, or any other community, never has to experience this kind of tragedy.

— Jeffry D. Curry,

Franklin County sheriff