This morning in Newtown, state police have briefed residents and reporters on the latest information about yesterday's tragic events. And at the moment, information about the shooter, who's been identified by law enforcement officials as 20-year-old Adam Lanza, is scant. He was found dead at the elementary school. Lanza is believed to have acted alone. NPR's Joel Rose is at this morning's briefing in Newtown. Joel, thanks for being with us.
Yesterday, we spoke with Rabbi Shaul Praver of Temple Adath Israel in Newtown, Connecticut. And he spent much of Friday, of course, trying to comfort families following the shooting. I can't imagine the Friday you had, sir.
And at moments like these, people often wonder if they should have seen something in the behavior of the gunman that might have predicted he could commit such as act of violence. We're joined now by NPR science correspondent Shankar Vedantam. Thanks very much for being with us today.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Yesterday, a 20-year-old man identified as Adam Lanza made his way into the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut and began shooting. Later we would learn that 26 people were shot dead, 20 of them children. Law enforcement officials tell NPR the shooter's mother was found dead at the family home.
President Barack Obama took time away from the budget negotiations yesterday to talk to the country about the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut. The president said he reacted first as the parent of two young daughters and he paused to wipe tears from his eyes.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I know there's not a parent in America who doesn't feel the same overwhelming grief that I do. The majority of those who died today were children, beautiful little kids between the ages of five and 10 years old.
And this morning, we're finding out more about the circumstances surrounding yesterday's attacks at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. Lieutenant J. Paul Vance of the Connecticut State Police has confirmed the gunman who massacred 26 children and adults at the school forced his way into the building.
And this morning, of course, we are reporting the story from Newtown, Connecticut; where yesterday, a young man named Adam Lanza shot and killed some 26 people at an elementary school - 20 of them, small children. Connecticut state police have briefed residents of Newtown, and reporters, on the latest from the crime scene at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, and at second crime scene.
The Sandy Hook Elementary School joins a sad and lengthening list of names in recent U.S. history. Since 12 students and a teacher were killed at Colorado's Columbine High School in 1999, there have been scores of other school shootings - so many it may be hard to recall all the names: Red Lake, Nickel Mines, Virginia Tech and Chardon High School are just a few of the names that have become branded by tragedy. Ben Markus of Colorado Public Radio spoke with Frank DeAngelis, the principal of Columbine High School.
Argh, it's on the tip of my tongue! Contestants in the Names and Faces competition focus at last year's World Memory Championships held in Guangzhou, China. A new field of mental athletes is currently vying for the 2012 championship.
In the gymnasium of a South London technical school, site of this year's World Memory Championships, Norwegian Ola Kaere Risa checks his stopwatch.
Risa is Norway's only contestant this year.
"I hope to defend the glory of my country," he says, laughing.
The 21st World Memory Championships are under way in London this weekend. About 75 competitors from some two dozen countries are vying to see who can memorize the most numbers, faces, playing cards or random words in a set amount of time.