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American tragedies bracket a short life

Her smiling infant photo in a 2002 book about 9/1 1 babies, like the terrible irony of her short life's span, is now almost too painful to contemplate.

Christina Taylor Green, the dark-eyed, energetic granddaughter of former Phillies manager Dallas Green, existed in the brief interlude between two great American tragedies.

Born just hours after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the 9-year-old was killed Saturday in the Arizona massacre in which a congresswoman was critically injured and five others, including a federal judge, died.

"She liked having that birthday," her mother, Roxanna, recalled in a telephone interview. "She thought it was a holiday when she was little. We had to set her straight."

In "Faces of Hope: Babies Born on 9/1 1," a book by Pennsylvanian Christine Naman that spotlighted one child from each state, a wishful quote accompanied the black-and-white photo of the then-tiny girl. "I hope you see rainbows," it said.

The youngest of two children of Green's son, John, she was among 20 people shot at a Tucson shopping-center meeting sponsored by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz.

The third-grader at Mesa Verde Elementary School had gone to the event with a neighbor because she had recently been elected to the student council and had an interest in politics, authorities said. The neighbor was shot four times but survived.

"It seemed like such a good idea," her mother said. "We never imagined anything like this could happen."

According to the Pima County Sheriff's Office, the girl died shortly after she was taken to University Medical Center.

Roxanna Green said in a television interview that she learned of the injury from her neighbor's husband and at first thought there had been an auto accident. But when she arrived at the hospital, she was told Christina had been shot in the chest.

"All this hate," said Roxanna Green, "It needs to stop."

Christina's shooting quickly became a flash point for some of the sorrow and anger that followed the latest gun-related horror. Internet chat rooms were abuzz with talk of the child's death, and at least three Facebook pages honoring Green were created, attracting tens of thousands of visitors and countless expressions of condolence.

Not surprisingly, given her pedigree, the death of the 9-year-old who was born in Maryland also was felt in the baseball community.

Her grandfather, still a senior adviser for the team, is a baseball lifer who guided the Phillies to their first world championship in 1980. Her father, meanwhile, is the Los Angeles Dodgers' East Coast scouting supervisor.

Also killed in Saturday's shooting rampage were:

*John Roll, 63, Arizona's chief federal judge.

*Gabe Zimmerman, 30, director of community outreach for Giffords.

*Phyllis Schneck, 79, retiree and church volunteer.

*Dorothy Morris, 76.

*Dorwin Stoddard, 76.

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