"I wouldn't want to have to send my kids back to that school," said Gibney, 50. "I just don't see how the kids could get over what happened there."
Laurie Badick, of Newtown, whose children attended the school several years ago, said she's torn. "Sandy Hook school meant the world to us before this happened. ... I have my memories in my brain and in my heart, so the actual building, I think the victims need to decide what to do with that."
Fran Bresson, a retired police officer who attended Sandy Hook Elementary School in the 1950s, wants the school to reopen, but he thinks the hallways and classrooms where staff and students were killed should be demolished.
"To tear it down completely would be like saying to evil, 'You've won,'" the 63-year-old Southbury resident said.
Residents of towns where mass shootings occurred have grappled with the same dilemma. Some have renovated, some have demolished.
Columbine High School, where two student gunmen killed 12 schoolmates and a teacher, reopened several months afterward. Crews removed the library, where most of the victims died, and replaced it with an atrium.
On an island in Norway where 69 people — more than half of them teenagers attending summer camp — were killed by a gunman in 2011, extensive remodeling is planned. The main building, a cafeteria where 13 of the victims died, will be torn down.
Virginia Tech converted a classroom building where a student gunman killed 30 people in 2007 into a peace studies and violence prevention center.