The victims of the Sandy Hook massacre

Emilie Parker. Credit: APTN

Twenty-six people were killed by gunman Adam Lanza in the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary on Friday, the vast majority being children.

Friends and family have paid tribute to the victims in a series of emotional testaments.

  • The 20 pupils killed in the massacre were aged either six or seven.

Charlotte Bacon, six, died wearing a new pink dress and boots that her mother had let her wear to school for the first time.

Her uncle, John Hagen, told Newsday: "She was going to go some places in this world. This little girl could light up the room for anyone."

Charlotte's older brother, Guy, was also in the elementary school, but was not shot.

Daniel Barden has been described by neighbours as a happy seven-year-old. He lived in the same neighbourhood as gunman Adam Lanza.

Daniel Barden lived near victims Chase Kowalski and Dylan Hockley.

Olivia Engel has been described, affectionately, as "the teacher's pet."

The six-year-old "loved attention" and had "perfect manners", family friend Dan Merton told the Stamford Advocate.

Olivia Engel was due to make a gingerbread house with her family after school.

Josephine Gay had celebrated her seventh birthday just three days before the massacre.

A posting on a Facebook memorial page said she was nicknamed "Boo", because she resembled a character from popular children's film Monster's Inc.

The Wall Street Journal said Josephine Gay set up lemonade stands in the summer.

Ana Marquez-Greene, six, was the daughter of jazz saxophonist Jimmy Greene.

A statement from the musician published by the Ottawa Citizen said: "Thank you for all of your prayers and kind words of support. As we work through this nightmare, we’re reminded how much we’re loved and supported on this earth and by our Father in heaven."

Ana Marquez-Greene was described as "really vivacious and affectionate." Credit: Family handout

Six-year-old Dylan Hockley was reportedly born in Britain and moved from Hampshire to Connecticut two years ago.

The family are understood to live on the same street as the Lanza family. Dylan's older brother Jake was also at the school and survived the massacre.

Dylan Hockley had looked forward to moving to America, his aunt told the Daily Telegraph. Credit: Facebook

Six-year-old Madeleine Hsu was among the victims. The Los Angeles Times described her as "shy and tiny" and fond of wearing "flowery dresses."

Madeleine's family has declined to comment publicly on her death.

The parents of Catherine Hubbard released a statement following the six-year-old's death.

"We are greatly saddened by the loss of our beautiful daughter, Catherine Violet, and our thoughts and prayers are with the other families who have been affected by this tragedy,” Jennifer and Matthew Hubbard said. “We ask that you continue to pray for us and the other families who have experienced loss in this tragedy.”

Catherine Hubbard's parents said they had lost a "beautiful daughter".

Seven-year-old Chase Kowalski has been described as a very active child. He recently told a neighbour he had won a mini-triathlon.

Chase, who leaves behind two older sisters, wanted two front teeth for Christmas, his 13-year-old neighbour Keeley Baumann told the News Times.

Neighbours said Chase Kowalski was always seen playing outside his house.

Jesse Lewis has been described as "infectious" by neighbours and someone who could "put a smile on your face".

The six-year-old liked to play with the horses in the family's stable.

"He was a very happy boy, definitely a character," neighbour Lisa Dismont told reporters.

Jesse Lewis's family home included a ranch and a horse barn.

James Mattioli lived in the same neighbourhood as Jesse Lewis and teacher Anne Marie Murphy.

The six-year-old has been described as a "great little swimmer" and "great kid" by family friends on Twitter.

James Mattioli had learned to swim with fellow victim Daniel Barden.

Grace McDonnell's family photo unmistakeably confirms a neighbour's description of the seven-year-old as a "real cute little blonde girl with blue eyes."

Her parents, Lynn and Chris McDonnell, said their daughter was "the love and light" of the family and said "words cannot adequately express our sense of loss."

Grace McDonnell's parents thanked people for their support.

Robbie Parker, the father of Emilie Parker, said his six-year-old daughter would have been "one of the first ones to be standing and giving her love and support to those victims."

She leaves behind two little sisters, aged three and four, who her family said she helped teach to dance and read.

Emilie Parker had been learning to speak Portuguese. Credit: APTN

Six-year-old Jack Pinto's biggest passion was American football, with New York Giants' superstar wide receiver Victor Cruz his favourite player.

The NFL star has spoken to Jack's family since Friday's massacre.

"There are no words that can describe the type of feeling you get when a kid idolises you so much that, you know, unfortunately they put him in a casket with your jersey on," he said.

Cruz added: "It was very humbling just to hear how big of a fan he was, for them to think about putting my jersey on him for the services."

Noah Pozner was the youngest victim of the massacre having turned six last month. His twin sister is understood to have survived the shooting.

His uncle said the family had moved to Newtown from New York to live in a safer community.

Arthur Pozner told Newsday his nephew was "extremely mature" and "extremely bright."

Noah Pozner's twin sister and eight-year-old sister also attended the school. Credit: Facebook

A Facebook tribute page to six-year-old Caroline Previdi has seen her described as "a sweet little girl" and a "little angel" by mourners.

Friends said Caroline Previdi liked to play soccer and hide-and-seek.

The family of Jessica Rekos said the six-year-old "loved everything about horses" and had asked Father Christmas for "new cowgirl boots and a cowgirl hat."

Her parents had promised Jessica, their eldest child, she would be given her first horse when she turned 10.

Jessica Rekos was described as a "creative, beautiful little girl" by her parents.

Avielle Richman, six, was also a horse lover and enjoyed riding to the point where she would "giggle when she trotted", the Connecticut Post has reported.

Her trainer, Annette Sullivan, described her as "the most delightful little girl you ever met in your life."

Benjamin Wheeler, the six-year-old son of two entertainers, reportedly had moved with his family to Newtown in April.

Neighbours said the little boy would follow his father around the outside of the house as he did everyday chores.

Allison Wyatt's nursery teacher remembered the six-year-old as a "very shy girl" who would break out into a smile when entertained, the New Haven Register has reported.

"She was such a sweet and caring girl. She loved everything," Kate Capellaro said.

  • The six adults killed at Sandy Hook included the school's headteacher. Several were commended for their bravery in attempting to protect pupils during the attack.

Headteacher Dawn Hochsprung, 47, and school psychologist Mary Sherlach reportedly ran towards Adam Lanza after he broke through the school door.

Hochsprung, who had worked at the school for two years, died while lunging at the gunman, officials said. She leaves behind a husband, George.

Dawn Hochsprung had become a popular head at Sandy Hook. Credit: Newtown Patch

Mrs Sherlach, 56, had reportedly worked at Sandy Hook Elementary since 1994 and, according to officials, died alongside Mrs Hochsprung.

On her professional website, Mrs Sherlach, said she was "always ready to assist in problem solving, intervention and prevention" with children who encountered difficulties.

Her family said they had lost a "loving mother, dedicated wife and above all, a wonderful, caring woman who was beyond dedicated to her students."

Mary Sherlach had worked at Sandy Hook for almost 20 years. Credit: RTV

The mother of teacher Lauren Rousseau, Teresa Rousseau, said her 30-year-old daughter had always "wanted to be a teacher from before she even went to kindergarten."

She said she took "comfort knowing that she had achieved that dream".

Lauren Rousseau had planned to see The Hobbit with her boyfriend on Friday. Credit: RTV

Teacher Victoria Soto, 27, reportedly hid some students in a bathroom or closet and died trying to shield them from bullets.

John Harkins, the mayor of Soto's home town of Stratford, said: "You have a teacher who cared more about her students than herself. That speaks volumes to her character, and her commitment and dedication."

Victoria Soto's lifelong dream was to be a teacher, her family said. Credit: RTV

The body of special education teacher Anne Marie Murphy, 52, was found covering children in her class. The mother-of-four was described as a "happy soul" by her mother, Alice McGowan.

"She was a very good daughter, a good mother, a good wife," she told Newsday.

Teaching assistant Rachel Davino was passionate about cooking, her Italian grandmother told USA Today. She said the 29-year-old, who lived in New Britain, Conn., was a friendly young woman.

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