Out of Tragedy: Love, Faith & Resilience

"No Matter What, Trust God."
"No Matter What, Trust God."
In green and white paint, the words on windows somewhere in the backroads of Newtown say: "Love is LOUDER than Violence" and a large green billboard on I-95 in Milford says: "WE ARE SANDY HOOK. WE CHOOSE LOVE". In the aftermath of the horrific school shooting in Sandy Hook last year, people from all over were moved to express the pain and sorrow they felt for the victims' families and Newtown community in creative memorials made from ribbons, Teddy Bears, crosses and even one from red plastic cups.

These tributes to the educators and children making up the 26 victims were meant to show Newtown residents they are not alone, and many were captured by the lens of Robert Carley's camera.

Carley of Stamford has two photo galleries commemorating the one year anniversary of the Sandy Hook tragedy — one at the State Capitol in Hartford and the other in the Ehlers Community Room of Edith Wheeler Memorial Library, 733 Monroe Turnpike in Monroe.

The gallery, "Tragedy & Tributes ... Photographs of Hope: Remembering the One Year Anniversary of the Newtown Shooting" can be seen in Monroe right up until New Year's.

Carley said he hopes visitors to the gallery will "appreciate how the community pulled together and supported the families of the victims. How they showed love, faith and resilience."

"The memorials expressed the importance of love, family and children," Carley said in a recent interview.

Carley snapped thousands of photos of Sandy Hook memorials and tens of thousands of 9/11 memorials over the past decade. His award-winning 9/11 photos were also featured in a gallery at the State Capitol, commemorating the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks.

"I don't do it to make money," said Carley. "I do it with an interest in art and history. Nine-eleven and 12/14 are significant events in American history. In both exhibits I wanted to show the positive spirit that arose after tragedy."

Of the Sandy Hook exhibit, Carley said, "I wanted to document faith in Newtown. Signs that stated, 'We are love.'" Signs put up by people of Newtown ... that they chose love, not to be bitter. No matter what, have faith in God. I loved those signs."  
Robynne Wildman December 27, 2013 at 10:34 AM
Thank you.
JF December 27, 2013 at 02:17 PM
Beautiful!!! Words can't really describe but I hope to bring my 8 year old daughter to see the exhibit in Monroe (where we live) and make sure she understands the significant meaning behind the tragedy. I knew those who lost loved ones and it's a tradgedy regardless of how many victims. It's something that never should have occurred. Thank you for portraying the beauty behind it and the strength we have within. It shows how strong love, faith and community strength can help people heal even when you don't know anyone involved. It shows the humanity that we, as people, have within side each of us. Whatever god you believe in would be proud of how we have all come together for strangers and loved ones in a dark time and a time of need. May we have a brighter New Year and future for all those who lost loved ones in any type of tradgedy. ~ Jamie Fiddler


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