‘‘We'll find someplace,’’ Gillespie said. ‘‘It won’t go to waste.’’
In addition to the town’s official fund, other private funds have been set up. Former Sandy Hook student Ryan Kraft, who once baby-sat Lanza, set up a fund with other alumni that has collected almost $150,000. It is earmarked for the Sandy Hook PTA.
Rabbi Shaul Praver of Congregation Adath Israel is raising money for a memorial to the victims. He said one man wrote a check for $52,000 for the project.
Several colleges, including the University of Connecticut, have set up scholarship funds to pay for the educations of students at Sandy Hook and the relatives of the victims.
Town officials have not decided yet what to do with all the money. A board of Newtown community leaders is being established to determine how it is most needed and will be best utilized, said Isabel Almeida with the local United Way, which has waived all its administrative fees related to the fund.
She said some have wondered about building a new school for Sandy Hook students if the town decides to tear the school down, but that decision has not been made.
And while the town is grateful for all the support, Almeida said, it has no more room for those gifts. Instead, she encouraged people to donate to others in memory of the Sandy Hook victims.
‘‘Send those teddy bears to a school in your community or an organization that serves low-income children, who are in need this holiday season, and do it in memory of our children,’’ she said.
Associated Press writers Allen G. Breed, Christopher Sullivan, Eileen AJ Connelly, Susan Haigh and John Christoffersen contributed to this report.