Sandy Hook Elementary victim: Nancy Lanza, 52
She was known for the game nights she hosted, the holiday decorations she put up at her house, her love of the Red Sox and her growing enthusiasm for target shooting. Now Nancy Lanza is known as her son's first victim.
Authorities say her 20-year-old son Adam gunned her down before killing 26 others at Sandy Hook. The two shared a home in a well-to-do Newtown neighborhood, but details were slow to emerge of who she was and what might have led her son to carry out such horror.
Friends say she spoke proudly of her sons, but discussion of her home life, particularly its trials and setbacks, was off limits.
Kingston, N.H., Police Chief Donald Briggs Jr. said Nancy Lanza once lived in the community and was a kind, considerate and loving person. The former stockbroker at John Hancock in Boston was well-respected, Briggs said.
Court records show Lanza and her ex-husband, Peter Lanza, filed for divorce in 2008. He lives in Stamford and is a tax director at General Electric. The split-up was not acrimonious and Adam spent time with both his mother and father, said Marsha Lanza of Crystal Lake, Ill., Peter Lanza's aunt.
A neighbor, Rhonda Cullens, said she knew Nancy Lanza from get-togethers she had hosted to play Bunco, a dice game. She said her neighbor had enjoyed gardening.
"She was a very nice lady," Cullens said. "She was just like all the rest of us in the neighborhood, just a regular person."