It hurts. It makes us wince just trying to fathom the horror and the pain. Each story, photo and video from the scene breaks our hearts just a little more.

There are 833 miles between Aiken County and Newtown, Conn. But the road is short today.

Today it feels like it’s our neighbors who were brutally murdered Friday, when a lone gunman, who reports say was a brilliant, yet troubled young man, killed his mother at their Newtown home, then drove to Sandy Hook Elementary School – a school he once attended – where he killed 20 children and six adults.

Police say his name was Adam Lanza. When he finished, he killed himself. What an easy way out for him. He leaves so many people, including his father and brother, to deal with the picking up the pieces of what’s left.

We want answers. We want to know why. We need to know how to maybe stop this from happening again – because next time it might be here.

The debate over gun control raised its controversial head quickly Friday. We aren’t weighing in today. Today we are grieving.

In the coming weeks we will learn more about the shooter. We’ll know each step he took through the school. We’ll hear stories of heroes: teachers like 27-year-old Vicki Soto who reportedly put herself between her first-grade students and the gunman. She lost her life.

We’ll see photos of the dead. We’ll hear the gut-wrenching pain from their families.

We will hug our children a little tighter, smile a little brighter at their laughter, and we will be more grateful for what we have.

President Obama eloquently put it in perspective in a televised statement a few hours after the shooting.

“This evening, Michelle and I will do what I know every parent in America will do, which is hug our children a little tighter and we’ll tell them that we love them, and we’ll remind each other how deeply we love one another. But there are families in Connecticut who cannot do that tonight. And they need all of us right now. In the hard days to come, that community needs us to be at our best as Americans.”

God bless the innocent who were killed, those left behind, and our nation that must once again deal with an unfathomable tragedy.