Newtown shooter: Mother missing link

2012-12-18 07:16
Adam Lanza

Adam Lanza

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Video

Obama speaks at Newtown vigil

2012-12-17 08:27

US President Barack Obama expressed his sadness in a speech at a vigil at the Newtown High School for the victims of the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Watch. WATCH

New York - In a case full of perplexing questions, the mother of Connecticut shooter Adam Lanza is the mystery woman - but whatever secrets she had about her son were lost forever when he shot her in the head.

Nancy Lanza has been something of a peripheral, and confusing, figure in the massive media coverage of the Newtown shootings.

When the tragedy is discussed, whether by President Barack Obama or ordinary mourners, references are made nearly exclusively to the 20 children and six staff members shot dead at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. It's almost as if Nancy Lanza didn't exist.

Yet she was the first to die that Friday, shot in the head by her 20-year-old son - with one of her own guns, and in her own house.

Amid the many rumours and unsubstantiated media reports about the horror, one picture painted of Nancy is of a somewhat kooky figure with a double life, the typical suburban mom on one side, and a closet survivalist hoarding an arsenal of deadly weapons in her posh house on the other.

But there are also signs she was a devoted mother who, like many Americans, happened to love firearms, and who was killed by the very young man she'd devoted her life to helping.

What's sure is that there is little sure about Nancy Lanza.

No connection with school

In the first hours of the shooting, most of the world's media reported wrongly that she was a teacher at the school. In fact, officials now say she had no connection with the school, nor did her son.

It's known that she was divorced from an executive at GE Capital, that she lived in a detached house in a well-off neighbourhood of Newtown, and that she owned at least the Bushmaster assault rifle and two semi-automatic handguns that Adam would ultimately turn on her - and then on the school.

Why did she have the weapons?

Her former sister-in-law, Marsha Lanza, said in US television interviews that Nancy was a "prepper", someone preparing to defend themselves from social unrest "down the line if the economy collapses".

But other friends said Nancy was no wild-eyed gun nut, but a gentle and caring woman who happened to love shooting and - in supremely tragic irony - took her shy son Adam to learn on the range.

One friend, Russ Hanoman, insisted that "she used [the guns] very responsibly."

"She was a very responsible person, especially in terms of safety," he told CNN.

Sebastian Morrell, another friend of the deceased woman, described her "great moral compass".

What seems apparent is that Nancy Lanza cared for her son, whose profile appears to be one of the unusually clever, but socially awkward youngster whom no one ever really got to know before he snapped.

Hoping to leave Newtown

Unlike his 24-year-old brother who has already set up as a tax expert in his father's footsteps, Adam remained with his mother.

"She eventually wound up home schooling him," Marsha Lanza said on CNN, describing Adam as a "very, very bright boy".

Friends of Nancy Lanza also told CNN on Monday said that she was hoping to leave Newtown with him some time next year in order to be near a college that would suit her difficult child.

The friends took to the airwaves to push back against suggestions that Nancy Lanza was suspicious - almost a villain.

One friend, John Bergquist, called her "a lovely woman".

He said "she just made you smile when you walked in the room".

- SAPA
Read more on:    adam lanza  |  us  |  us school shooting  |  gun control
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
43 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

How to make this a sensual, sexy summer!

Summer is the perfect time for rekindling cooling passions and for shedding your inhibitions as well as your clothes…

 
 

I love summer.24

This is what South Africans Googled in 2014!
This hilarious song is your new holiday anthem
The world's least visited destination is breathtaking!
LOL treadmill fail!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be emotionally defensive or reserved today. You need to step up today as there may be extra responsibilities to deal with....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.