Mike Orso, president of the New York State Auto Collision Technicians Association (NYSACTA), issued the following statement regarding the recent tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., where 20 children and six adults lost their lives:
On behalf of the New York auto body community, I would like to extend heartfelt thoughts of condolence and deepest sorrow over the tragic event of Friday, Dec. 14, 2012, in Newtown, Conn.
I think I can speak on behalf of the entire industry that these people, our customers, friends, family and neighbors have endured and witnessed life’s ultimate fear. We can only imagine in our own way the unbearable grief if faced with the same horror.
As the news spreads, a day will not pass that we won’t find a connection by way of a friend, family member or acquaintance of someone lost in this tragedy, adding more perspective.
While listening to reports Friday and every day as caring parents, grandparents and humans, we all are affected and wipe away tears. Let us not forget how grateful we are to the heroes among them that day who saved many more lives.
I know our friends in the Connecticut auto body community who have always put the well-being of their customers ahead of any daily activity. I know they too are hurting, and to them we offer our thoughts and prayers in the ability to heal. We know they too will struggle as they watch friends around them fight back tears and grieve.
As Americans, we have experienced too many tragic days. Our parents struggled with tragedy, we have endured tragedy and so will our children. Certain days will forever be etched in our minds; Dec. 7, 1941; Nov. 22, 1963; Sept. 11, 2001. Maybe it’s the day we lost a loved one or our best friend. I know no words can put Dec.14, 2012 in perspective or make it go away.
It’s my hope we can help each other honor these lost angels, to somehow help each other to do the next required thing. Know that our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Newtown: to those who are gone who see no more evil and to those who are left behind to hurt and grieve.
Mike Orso, President