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Fairfield vigil Sunday for those lost at Sandy Hook, other victims of violence

A memorial service is planned Sunday in Fairfield in memory of the 26 victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre a year ago on Dec. 14, 2012, as well as other lives lost to violence over the past year.

The vigil, organized by the Fairfield Clergy Association and town officials, will take place at 4 p.m. Town Hall Green, in front old Town Hall, 611 Old Post Road.

Keynote speakers for the vigil will include Police Chief Gary MacNamara and representatives of local religious congregations.

The event also will have three areas on Town Hall Green designated for special remembrances. They are:

- The 20 first-graders and six educators killed at the Newtown school.

- People who have died because of violent acts in the United States during the last year.

- Victims of violence in other parts of the world.

Candles and glow sticks will be placed at each of these designated areas, and prayers will be recited. Brief readings and music will also pay tribute to the lives lost at each of the areas.

The Rev. Matthew Calkins, rector of St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, is the coordinator of the observance, and is encouraging the public to attend. "We will not only remember the names of those who were lost in Newtown, but will also look ahead to how we can continue to stand against violence in all forms -- in our town, our country, and the world," Calkins said in a news release announcing the vigil.

Selectman Cristin McCarthy Vahey, a member of the planning committee, said, "As a community, we stand in solidarity with our neighbors in Newtown, who continue to grieve and to heal."

After the vigil, a reception will take place in First Church Congregational, across the Old Post Road from Town Hall Green.

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