The parents of one of the 20 first-graders killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre met with the gunman’s father for more than an hour in an effort to bring some closure to the tragedy, asking him about his son’s mental health and other issues.
Alissa and Robbie Parker told “CBS This Morning” in the second half of a two-part interview that aired Friday morning that the meeting was emotional and productive. The Parkers’ 6-year-old daughter, Emilie, died in December’s shooting rampage.
Peter Lanza, the father of Adam Lanza “seemed to appreciate” that the Parkers asked for prayers and sympathy for everyone affected by the Dec. 14 Newtown mass killing, including the family of the shooter, Robbie Parker said.
“We wanted to talk as parents,” said Parker, who has relocated his family back to Utah following the rampage.
Alissa Parker told CBS reporter Nora O’Donnell that she told Peter Lanza “there is a lot of hope and opportunity to gain from this, and that he holds the key to that. There is information and things to be learned from this and without his cooperation it would go nowhere.”
The Parkers said that Peter Lanza is taking an active role in getting answers to why Adam shot his way into the elementary school and murdered 20 children.
O’Donnell told the couple that some people would question their interest in meeting the father of their daughter’s killer. Anger would be a waste of energy and wouldn’t change anything, Robbie Parker said.
The Parkers said they tell their daughters to express what they are feeling and when one of Emilie’s sisters asked about Adam Lanza, Alissa asked what she thought of the killer’s decision.
“It was a bad decision,” the little girl replied.