Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting Survivor Reveals Terrifying Details in Heartbreaking Essay

Tatum Radacsi, who is now 18 years old, is speaking out on changes that need to be made amid the

Sandy Hook Elementary

Tatum Radacsi, who is now 18 years old, is speaking out on changes that need to be made amid the 10th anniversary of America’s deadliest mass shooting: Sandy Hook Elementary.

In an exclusive recent interview with The Sun, Radacsi, who was eight years old at the time when the shooting took place, walked through the day that had changed her life forever.


Sandy Hook Elementary Shooting Survivor Recounts Horrors

December 14th, 2012 has been imprinted in the people of the Sandy Hook community in Connecticut and it will be for years to come. In fact, the world will never forget Sandy Hook.

But, for Radacsi that exact morning, her brand new shoes that she had on her feet were the most exciting thing on the horizon when she got to school.

“I went into school like any other day,” she said.

“I wore my new cowboy boots and I was so excited to show my friends.”

Then, five minutes after the school day began, the shooting started.

“You could feel like something was off,” said the survivor.

“There was a popping noise and doors were getting locked.”

Radacsi shared that her teacher went to go lock the door and told all of the students to hide in a corner.

“My teacher was on her phone and then the loudspeaker went off. There was screaming, and right then is when I I understood that something wasn’t right.”

Outside of her classroom, 20 year old Adam Lanza walked into the elementary school with a semi-automatic rifle and several 30 round magazines.

Lanza then went on to massacre 20 children, all of who were between six and seven years old and six adult staff members. He then killed himself with a handgun just five minutes after entering the school.

Before Lanza had arrived to Sandy Hook, he had killed his mother at their home in Newtown.

The motive for this disastrous crime is still unclear.

In an essay that Radacsi penned as part of her college application, she relived the event. 

She shared the emotional piece with The U.S. Sun on the 10th anniversary of the tragedy. 

“Every single detail is imprinted in my mind like a bad feeling I can never shake,” she wrote.

“An event that happened years ago, feels like it occurred yesterday.”

The Aftermath at Sandy Hook Elementary

Radacsi remembers that police officers eventually knocked on her classroom door and let the students out.

“Emotions were extremely high,” said Radacsi.

“Some were crying. Some didn’t even understand what was happening. I, myself, was just in shock.”

Police entered the school five minutes after Lanza died and began clearing out the surviving children and staff. 

“I had no idea who he was,” Radacsi said.

“When I was leaving my classroom, the police had lined up so I couldn’t see down the hallway where he was.

“Personally, I never saw him in town. I had no idea who he was.”

First responders led the children across the street to a fire station in front of the school.

Radacsi remembered mass confusion while hysterical parents searched for their children in the devastating aftermath.

“I didn’t really comprehend what the whole situation meant. I remember looking around for my parents and observing everything around me.”

The Emotion

Radacsi said that her parents tried to shield her from the onslaught of media coverage, but she still dealt with serious issues while trying to understand the incident.

“My parents distracted me with whatever they could,” she said.

“As a coping mechanism, I was constantly with someone. I slept with my mom in her bed for months.”

Radacsi said she is haunted by her moments in that building because the shooting would be her final experience with the school.

“After December 14, I never stepped foot in Sandy Hook Elementary School again,” she wrote in her heartbreaking essay.

“The town decided to use a vacant old school building in Monroe as a temporary placeholder.

“But it was evident that the new halls lacked the smiles of many beautiful souls.”

Change on the Way?

Just ten years after the horrific event, Radacsi has come to the platform to call for a change in such a matter.

She has been triggered to feel this way because there was also a small incident involving 3 students at her college at the University of Saint Joseph’s where she attends in New Hartford, Conneticut.

She has been very aggravated that nothing has been done to stop these precautions and to stop the horrific events from happening.

“There’s always the constant feeling of looking over my shoulder, especially if I’m walking alone,” she said.

“I feel as though I have a stronger appreciation for my friends. After the incident, I got really close with my parents.

“They became such a strong support for me, that I leaned heavily in the following years, and still do.”

Sandy Hook sparked a huge discussion about gun control in the wake of the tragedy.

In Radacsi’s opinion, policymakers involved in the debate should focus less on politics and more on the lives that were ripped out of the hands of loved ones.

“I think that it’s not a political matter, it’s a matter of people losing their lives,” she said.

“No matter what political side you’re on, there needs to be understanding that people are losing loved ones and it’s not fair.”