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While Noah’s death had given Veronique a mission, Lenny “was just numb,” he said.
Lenny had worked for two decades as an IT consultant but now found the crisis management that the job required to be too overwhelming.
“What happened just weighed on the town like a Chernobyl-like cloud,” Veronique told me from her home in a state far from Newtown that the Pozners prefer not to identify, given the threats that conspiracy theorists have leveled against some Sandy Hook families.
The Pozners’ marriage had been falling apart before the shooting, and though Noah’s death briefly brought them back together, the couple eventually divorced.
But for him, the appeal of conspiracy theories was the same as watching a good science-fiction movie. When he first discovered the theories about Noah, Lenny, who grew up in Brooklyn, made only a halfhearted attempt to respond.
“I feel that your type of show created these hateful people,” Pozner wrote in an email to Alex Jones, to which one of Jones’s employees replied that Jones would love to speak to him if “we confirm that you are the real Lenny Pozner.” Pozner declined, in part because he found himself unable to do much of anything.
“My child — who lived, who was a real person — is basically going to be erased.” The Pozners moved to Newtown in 2005, partly to send their kids to better schools, but after Noah’s death they saw no choice but to leave.
One Friday night, a year and a half after the shooting, he joined a Facebook group called Sandy Hook Hoax, one of the more prominent hoaxer meeting grounds.
(Its logo features a ghostly child holding an index finger to her mouth.) Pozner told the group he was there to answer questions, and he expressed empathy for their mind-set.
On December 14, 2012, Lenny Pozner dropped off his three children, Sophia, Arielle, and Noah, at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.
Noah had recently turned 6, and on the drive over they listened to his favorite song, “Gangnam Style,” for what turned out to be the last time.