Adam Lanza's mother loved guns and took her kids target shooting—but was also a high-strung woman who seemed just able to hold herself together. People who knew Nancy Lanza, the first victim in yesterday's massacre, tell the New York Times she also liked landscaping, jazz, and craft beers. And she attended ladies' nights out and Labor Day picnics, keeping a public face "with uncommon grace" despite the difficulties of raising Adam, who people say had Asperger's syndrome or another developmental disorder.
Adam killed his mother with a gun apparently taken from her collection yesterday before driving to Sandy Hook Elementary School and killing 26 people. "She had several different guns," says a landscaper who worked on her home. Jim Leff, a musician, posted on his website that Nancy was "a big, big gun fan"—which might explain the Glock, Sig-Sauer, and .223 Bushmaster rifle found at the school. "She was really kind and warm, but she always seemed a little bit high-strung," Leff told the Times. Now he realizes "how difficult her troubled son," Adam, "was making things for her." (Read more Connecticut school shooting stories.)