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Grieving Newtown residents cope on Christmas Day

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NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

The world is a very different place in Newtown, Connecticut since the school shooting earlier this month and that includes Christmas – where family and friends are leaning on each other during these tough times.   

There's no doubt Christmas Day in Newtown, Connecticut is both somber and sorrowful, but sometimes it's the smallest people with the littlest gestures that make the biggest difference. 

One by one and all by himself, Cooper Carlile put down cards for the children of Newtown, Connecticut at a church-side memorial – it's how the fifth grader wanted to spend his Christmas. 

"When I heard about Sandy Hook, I just felt really bad for all the kids who had died," said Cooper. 

Cooper, who came all the way from Houston, Texas, did not want to show up empty handed. He persuaded his principal to let his entire school make all these cards filled with prayers and poems. 

"I wasn't surprised he wanted to do something, I was just surprised that he followed through with it. It made me really proud," said Jane Gasdaska, Cooper's mother.  

"All the children wrote cards and Cooper said he would deliver them up here," said Scoop Carlile, Cooper's father. 

A promise Cooper kept this Christmas Day. The 10-year-old shared part of one particularly poignant poem written for the children of Newtown. 

The poem reads: "They were filled with such joy, they didn't know what to say, they remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day. Where are we? Asked a little girl as quiet as a mouse. This is heaven" declared a small boy. We're spending Christmas at god's house!" 

Cooper himself giving credence to the sign now hanging at Saint Rose of Lima Church. 

"I think the whole world is seeing now the darkness will not overtake us, and today the light came into the world," said Deacon Rick Scinto of St. Rose of Lima Church. 

This Christmas that light shined in other small ways too. Police from all around Connecticut relieved the Newtown officers who had worked around the clock since the tragedy. Heroes of all kinds coming to show their respects to all those lives were lost. 

"I really just wish they would come back because then everything would be back to normal," said one resident.  

Sadly that Christmas wish will not come true, but the parishioners here at St. Rose of Lima Church say they know those 26 souls are now resting peacefully in heave.

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