'Don't let the killer destroy your spirit,' friend writes to victim's mom

December 17, 2012 (CHICAGO)

Joanne and Joel Bacon moved to Newtown, Connecticut, about seven years ago from North Aurora, Ill. Joanne and neighbor Teresa Martin bonded over their pregnancies.

"I cried when I saw the name," Martin said. Charlotte Bacon was one of 20 young children gunned down Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut. Described by her parents as an extraordinarily gifted young girl who wanted to be a veterinarian, Martin says she never met Charlotte. But she remembers the day she received her birth announcement via email.

"Gorgeous baby girl. Cutest baby. Prettiest girl I'd ever seen in my life. I was so happy for her," Martin said.

Despite the time that's passed since they were neighbors, Martin said she's struggled to come to terms with the news that the daughter Joanne wanted for so long is gone. She wrote a letter to Joanne in the hopes that it will alleviate a mother's pain.

"I would crumble if it were my own child is taken away -- but not Joanne. She's strong. She's the best mom. She can handle this. I would tell her, 'Don't let the killer destroy her spirit,'" Martin said.

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