HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Communities across the country have been holding special vigils in honor of the victims in Newtown, Conn.
Tuesday night, people in Huntington gathered at the Altizer Baptist Church for an emotional candlelight service.
"I nanny four kids here in Huntington,” 20-year-old Tasha Blankenship said. “I'm not their mom by any means, but Friday I just wanted to hug them and tell them I love them."
Twenty-six candles were lit, and a church bell was rung in honor of each of the children and faculty who lost their lives.
"There definitely is a coming together of all,” Cox Landing Principal Kristin Giles said. “Anyone with children, nieces, nephews, grandchildren, anyone in the education field, I think we all feel a connection."
"We never expect it could happen to us, but it can,” Blankenship said. “Harm is out there. All we have is to trust in a God that's in control."
Along with praying for the victims' families, they prayed for school teachers and staff and government officials across the country.
Another vigil in honor of the Newtown victims is scheduled at 7 p.m. Thursday at Guyandotte Elementary.