Mourners looked on in grief Saturday as shooting victim Ana Grace Márquez-Green, 6, one of the final Sandy Hook Elementary School children tragically killed by gunman Adam Lanza, was laid to rest at noon.
Friends and family gathered at the The First Cathedral in Bloomfield, Connecticut to pay their respects with a visitation at 10 and a homegoing celebration at noon. The Carmon Funeral Home indicated that her burial was private.
Márquez-Green’s father, a jazz saxophonist, instilled his little girl with a love of singing and music. ”She never walked anywhere,” her obituary states. “Her mode of transportation was dance.” Dancing from room to room, she shared that love with her younger brother Isaiah. On a home video, Isiaiah plays the piano while Ana belts out a hymn and it is easy to see the joy on both of their faces.
To commemorate her musical gifts and her generous spirit, Ana’s parents, Jimmy and Nelba Márquez-Greene, have set up the Ana Grace Márquez-Greene Music Scholarship Fund at Western Connecticut State University in lieu of presents and flowers.
“In her short life, Ana strenghtened us with her loving, generous, joyful spirit. She often left sweet notes that read, “I love you Mom and Dad,” under our bedroom pillow — not on special occasions, but, rather, on ordinary days,” reads a statement about the scholarship.
Márquez-Green’s mother, Nelba, hopes this tragedy draws greater attention to the issue of mental illness in the country and helps reduce the stigma associated with it. Some former classmates of the shooter Adam Lanza have suggested that he had Asperger’s, a high-functioning form of autism.
Nelba Márquez-Green, a clinical fellow at the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, has asked people to reach out to the organization for more information about how to help someone with mental illness. She has also set up a family therapy fund in care of the Klingberg Family Centers for donations.
Supporters and friends have set up their own fund for the family “to help them through this unspeakable tragedy an enable them to carry on Ana’s memory and spirit ” reads a statement.