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Father of Sandy Hook victim dies in apparent suicide

Sandy Hook dad dies in apparent suicide

The father of a student who was killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre has died in an apparent suicide, police said Monday. Police said they discovered the body of 49-year-old Jeremy Richman at Edmond Town Hall in Newtown, Connecticut.

Police were responding to reports of a suicide at the location at 7 a.m. Monday. They said the death "appears to be a suicide," but would not disclose any other details. The state medical examiner's office will perform an autopsy that is expected to be completed later Monday.

Richman's daughter Avielle was one of the 26 people killed in the 2012 mass shooting.

Dr. Jeremy Richman at University of New England
Jeremy Richman speaks with students and faculty at the University of New England in Biddeford on Tuesday, August 12, 2014. Gregory Rec/Portland Press Herald via Getty

"This is a heart breaking event for the Richman family and the Newtown Community as a whole, the police department's prayers are with the Richman family right now, and we ask that the family be given privacy in this most difficult time," Lt. Aaron Bahamonde said in a statement.

The announcement comes just a day after police in Florida said a second student who survived the 2018 Parkland shooting died of an apparent suicide. Sydney Aiello, a recent graduate of Stoneman Douglas, took her own life on March 17. So far police said they've found no link of Saturday's death to Aiello.

After the death of Avielle, Richman and his wife, Jennifer Hensel, channeled their grief into something positive. Richman, a neuroscientist, created the Avielle Foundation to prevent "violence and building compassion through brain research." A GoFundMe fundraiser has been created to raise money for the foundation and carry on Richman's mission. 

If you or someone you know might be at risk of suicide, there is help. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All calls are confidential. You can also text a crisis counselor at 741741 or visit suicidepreventionlifeline.org

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