Politics

Remembering Heroic Sandy Hook Teacher, Murphy Yields the Floor

Special education teacher could have escaped, but she stayed with student as both were shot fatally

President Barack Obama presents a 2012 Citizens Medal to the family of slain Sandy Hook Elementary School teacher Anne Marie Murphy. (Photo by JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

Sen. Christopher Murphy ended his filibuster early Thursday by recalling an emotional story he shared during his first speech in the Senate.  

He stood next to a picture of smiling 6-year-old Dylan Hockley, who was killed in the December 2012 massacre of kids and teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Murphy's home state of Connecticut.  

Hockley had a close relationship with his special-education teacher, Anne Marie Murphy. Murphy said that when the gunman, Adam Lanza, entered the school she probably had a chance to run or hide, the senator said.  

“Instead, Anne Marie Murphy made the most courageous decision that anyone could imagine,” the freshman Democrat said. “Anne Marie Murphy found Dylan Hockley and embraced him.”  

Murphy said they know that's what she did because "when the police entered they classroom, that’s how they found Dylan Hockley. Dead. Wrapped in the embrace of Anne Marie Murphy.”  

"It doesn't take courage to stand here on the floor of the United States Senate for two hours or six hours or 14 hours. It doesn't take courage to stand up to the gun lobby when 90 percent of your constituents want change to happen." Murphy said.  

“It takes courage to look into the eye of a shooter and instead of running, wrapping your arms around a 6-year-old boy and accepting death as a trade for just a tiny, little ... piece of increased peace of mind for a little boy under your charge.”  

“I ask you all this question," Murphy said as he ended his marathon speech, "if Anne Marie Murphy could do that, then ask yourself, what can you do to make sure that Orlando or Sandy Hook never, ever happens again?”

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