It has now been three months since the tragic events in Newtown, Connecticut. Three months since we lost 20 innocent children and six dedicated adults who had so much left to give. Three months since we, as Americans, began asking ourselves if we’re really doing enough to protect our communities and keep our children safe.
I cannot think of any meanings of that phrase. Your help would be appreciated.
The writer means that those six adults who were killed (presumably they were teachers) could have contributed a good deal more to society and the public good had their lives not been abbreviated.