The father of a 6-year-old girl who was killed in Sandy Hook "succumbed to grief that he could not escape," his wife said.
Jeremy Richman, 49, was found dead Monday at Edmond Town Hall in Newtown, Connecticut, where he had an office. His death was ruled a suicide, according to officials. The couple’s daughter Avielle was among the 20 students and six educators killed when a gunman opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012.
Jennifer Hensel posted a statement on GoFundMe following her husband's death.
“Side by side since 1991, Jeremy and I walked a path of deep friendship, marriage, and parenthood. As you may know, our first born, our beautiful Avielle, was murdered at Sandy Hook school in 2012,” Hensel wrote.
In 2013, the couple started the Avielle Foundation, dedicated to preventing violence and bullying through brain research and education. The couple went on to have two more children, Imogen, 4, and Owen, 2.
Richman, a neuroscientist, became internationally known for his advocacy after quitting his job in the aftermath of the massacre.
“The brain is just another organ, and you don’t have to be a neuroscientist to recognize that it can be healthy, it can be unhealthy, and that you need to feel comfortable advocating for your own brain health and the brain health of your loved ones,” Richman told The Associated Press in 2016. “We feel that the failure to do that led in large part to the tragedy at Sandy Hook.”
The GoFundMe page for the family has raised more than $27,000.
“To parent our children without my champion shatters my heart and I will love my best friend forever,” Hensel said.