Student Well-Being

Professional Athletes Honor Sandy Hook Victims on Anniversary Weekend

By Bryan Toporek — December 16, 2013 1 min read
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Saturday marked the one-year anniversary of the tragic shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., where six educators and 20 students were gunned down by 20-year-old Adam Lanza.

At least two professional athletes, Andre Drummond of the NBA’s Detroit Pistons and Victor Cruz of the NFL’s New York Giants, paid their respects to the victims of the shootings.

Drummond, who attended high school and college in Connecticut, posted an image on his Instagram account of the “Welcome to Sandy Hook” sign, along with the hashtags #CtTogetherWeStand and #Sandy1year.

He then posted a picture of shoes with the names of all 26 victims, which he was planning to play in that night:

Cruz, on the other hand, singled out one of the victims of the Sandy Hook tragedy: Jack Pinto, a six-year-old Giants fan whose favorite player was Cruz, per

On the Dec. 14 anniversary of the shootings, Cruz posted an image of Pinto on his Instagram account, accompanied by this caption: “You’ve taught me more than you even know Jack. Rest in eternal piece.”

The next day, he posted an image of the cleats he planned to wear while playing against the Seattle Seahawks. He wrote “Jack Pinto” on his right cleat and “Never Forget” on his left cleat. On the back of each cleat, he wrote “My” and “Hero.”

This wasn’t Cruz’s first tribute to Pinto. He wrote the child’s name on his cleats and gloves last December, two days after the shootings, and he later traveled to Newtown to deliver those cleats and gloves to Pinto’s family.

For more on the lasting impact of the Sandy Hook tragedy, check out this report from my colleague, Evie Blad.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Schooled in Sports blog.