In the face of a tragedy that brought the commander in chief to tears, a 15-year-old Grass Valley girl is urging others to join her in remembering the 26 school victims with a simple act.
On Friday, she's asking her friends, classmates, anyone and everyone to keep the victims of the mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., in their hearts by writing the school's name "Sandy Hook" on the back of their hands.
"It's a good way to think of (the victims) all day," said Carly Maxstone. "It's really easy. Anyone can do it."
The town of Newtown is 3,000 miles away, but that hasn't stopped Sacramentans from searching for ways to honor the victims.
Maxstone has taken to Facebook with her request. Several local bloggers on Monday bypassed normal subjects to instead turn attention to the victims. And Monday evening about 50 people attended "A Vigil Against Violence" at St. Matthew's Christian Church in the Fruitridge area. Most of those who came were adults, with only a few children.
A candle was lighted as the name of each of the shooting victims was read.
Reginald Sanders, a member of St. Matthew's and father of four children ages 2 to 9, said his youngsters didn't fully understand what had occurred but were sad.
"I told them some people have mental problems and some things happen in life that make them go the wrong way," Sanders said.
While some efforts to honor the dead made a deliberate effort to avoid the political hot button issue of gun control, others said that enacting meaningful change is the best way to protect against such future attacks.
When asked whether gun control was being talked about among her classmates at Ghidotti Early College High School, Maxstone said she is trying to keep her efforts devoid of politics.
"We are trying to focus more on the tragedy," she said. "We have a politically diverse school, so we try not to get into that. It's more about remembering the kids."
"Dear Blog Friends, I am one of many craft, cooking, lifestyle and DIY bloggers who had posts to share with you today, but the events of Friday's shooting in Connecticut have left us heartbroken," the shared statement begins.
"To honor the memory of the lives cut short, we choose to step away from our blogs and computers today to celebrate the gift of life and those we love most," it reads.
The bloggers' statement does not address solutions, but others suggest that advocates should seize on the fresh outrage to enact reforms.
President Barack Obama, speaking at a prayer service Sunday, addressed the subject without using the words "gun control."
"We can't tolerate this anymore. These tragedies must end. And to end them, we must change," Obama said.
Lawson Stuart, a new member of the Pacific-Fruitridge Fire Protection District, is hoping to use his platform as an elected official to turn attention to violence not just mass shootings.
He said he'd like to begin a conversation that leads to community-based reform.
"These shootings aren't random anymore," Stuart said. "This one wasn't even the first of the year; it was the biggest."
Assemblyman Roger Dickinson, D-Sacramento, who spoke during the vigil, said in an interview that citizens must do more than mourn the victims. He said the Connecticut shooting, on the heels of a shooting at an Oregon mall earlier last week, should restart the difficult conversation about meaningful new controls to limit access to guns and ammunition.
"Now more than ever, we need to ask ourselves, 'What does it take to ensure those lives were not lost in vain?' " Dickinson said.
Patrick Kennedy, a Sacramento City Unified School District trustee, speaking at the vigil, said, "Don't simply hope that from this tragedy comes great change. Demand it."