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Memorial Wall

Click on photos to read the stories, or select a page below.

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
~George Santayana

September 17th:
Thomas Cressman
died on September 17th, 2000

39yo Thomas Cressman from UK was murdered by his girlfriend. They dated for two years, and she was staying in his flat because of her financial hardships. In September of 2000 he took her on a holiday to Italy and his family's villa on the French Riviera; she hoped he would propose to her, and he didn't, and told her he had no intention of marrying her, when she confronted him. The argument continued when they returned back home, and Mr Cressman called police saying that "somebody is going to get hurt", but police never came to his apartment. That night while he was sleeping, his girlfriend smashed him with a cricket bat and then stabbed him with a knife.


Posted by Manya on March 27th, 2016

September 18th:
Kelsey
died on September 18th, 2004

I miss you everyday, We suffered everything together, so it isn't fair you were the one who had to die..I guess life isn't fair but just remember I love you and miss with every breath and heartbeat.


Posted by Hania on May 28th, 2008

Jamey Rodemeyer
died on September 18th, 2011

14yo Jamey from New York, USA, was bullied for being bisexual. He was a fan of Lady Gaga and did a lot of activism against homofobia on his YouTube channel, including a video for the "It Gets Better project, a website dedicated to preventing teen suicide. Jamey committed suicide by hanging. His death made a large impact on the society; Lady Gaga dedicated a song to him and met with President Barack Obama to discuss school bullying prevention. New York state launched its Cyberbully Census. Multiple celebrities came out as gay, to help eradicate the stigma.


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

Hiawayi Robinson
died on September 18th, 2014

8yo Hiawayi from Alabama, USA, attended a third grade and "lived her life to the fullest, unafraid and full of joy," according to family and friends. Five days before her 9th birthday, she went to visit her dad to pick up $150 that he wanted to give her as a birthday gift. She never returned home; her dead body was found behind an abandoned building in the neighborhood, and coroners report stated that she died during rape. Her dad was charged with sodomy and murder, and is pending trial while serving a different sentence in federal prison.

"The pain is still the same, nothing can change the pain I feel for my loss," Hiawayi's mom said. "But, to see all these people here, it helps with my comfort, to see people come together, and love and support one another... Love your family, stay close, time is short, that's what I pretty much got from this situation - life can really be short, (so) love your people while you can."


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

September 21st:
Asunta Fong Yang Basterra Porto
died on September 21st, 2013

12yo Asunta was adopted from China as a baby by a well off couple from Spain, who raised her to be a prodigy: she studied English, French, Chinese, and German (aside from native Spanish and Galician), took private classes in ballet, violin, and piano, and skipped an academic year. However, many things went wrong in one year when Asunta turned 12: both of mom's parents passed away within months of each other, mom had an affair which resulted in divorce, and had a nervous breakdown. The parents needed space and sent Asunta to spend the summer with her nanny and godmother. However, that didn't help, and they planned to murder her. Mom drugged Asunta and strangled her, and then they left the body at the side of the road. Both were convicted of murder and sentenced to 18 years in prison.


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

Keith Bryan
died on September 21st, 2011

52yo Mr Bryan from Oklahoma, USA, was a Chief of Fire Department where he worked for more than 30 years, owned his own construction business, and was active in church. He had two sons, two grandsons, and a wife who seems to have struggled with sex addiction. She kept updating her friends on her numerous affairs, then told one of her lovers that she's about to receive a large inheritance and will be free to be with him. Soon after Mr Bryan was shot in the back of his head in his home. Several friends and family members testified she showed them a photo of the man's penis and bragged about the tryst while she rode with them to the hospital to see her husband after he was shot. She was sentenced to life without parole.


Posted by Manya on July 18th, 2016

Allison Newman
died on September 21st, 2006

Mom of 2yo Allison from Michigan, USA, struggled with crack cocaine addiction, asked a friend to care for her temporarily, and when CPS found out about it, Allison was taken to foster care. Her foster parents couldn't have children and were hoping to adopt Allison, but the custody was placed on hold till Allison's biomom completes her rehab treatment. On September 21st, Allison died of fractured skull, brain swelling, and bleeding. Her foster mother told four different stories as to how it happened, the last story being that she played "whirlybird" with the baby and accidentally dropped her off a second floor balcony. After that, however, she didn't seek medical help for Allison. The foster mother was convicted of murder.


Posted by Manya on June 26th, 2016

September 22nd:
Tyler Clementi
died on September 22nd, 2010

18yo Tyler from New Jersey, USA, was a freshman at Rutgers University, a violinist, one of only two incoming freshman who made the graduate school orchestra. Tyler was gay, and his roommate had a problem with it. Just three weeks into the semester, the roommate secretly recorded a video of Tyler kissing a man and invited his friends to watch it. Tyler reported the incident to the university and requested a change of roommate, but after a few days he saw his roommate's Twitter feed, realized that he had become a topic of ridicule in the university, and jumped off the George Washington bridge.

Tyler's suicide received nationwide attention and prompted numerous changes at Rutgers University, the state of New Jersey, and American Colleges overall. Tyler's parents established the Tyler Clementi Foundation, which focuses on promoting acceptance of LGBT teens and others marginalized by society, providing education against all forms of bullying including cyber bullying over the internet and promoting research and development into the causes and prevention of teenage suicide.


Posted by Manya on July 8th, 2016

September 23rd:
John Pehota
died on September 23rd, 2015

77yo Mr Pehota was shot by his wife of 40 years. She was cooking pork chops and drinking wine, they began arguing (she doesn't remember what it was about), she broke a plate, and then got her "possum gun" that she used to scare off possums on her property, and shot her husband four times: his heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys. She then called 911, saying "I think I shot my husband. I think I shot him three times... he pushes me, he mentally pushes me." Mrs Pehota said he has never hurt her physically.

Their family friend said, "I know a lot of Jack’s friends and family, we’ve all talked about it and nobody can understand how it really happened. But I know they were having problems, he was really getting up there in age. When I was talking with one of my best friends, we were saying we could picture Jack saying, ‘go ahead, shoot me,’ and if Anne had it in her mind to do something, she would do it. They were nitpicking at each other for years, and I guess Anne couldn’t take it anymore." Mrs Pehota's defense attorney explained that "she has a lot of stressors that have nothing to do with Mr. Pehota. She is stressing about her house, about her air-conditioning unit, and that she was being cheated by different service people... and she has some health concerns about Mr. Pehota."


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

September 24th:
Zahra Baker
died on September 24th, 2010

10yo Zahra from Australia was killed by her stepmom. Zahra's biological mom gave the sole custody to Zahra's dad because she suffered from postpartum depression and couldn't cope with the baby. Zahra survived lung and bone cancer, though lost some of her hearing and had to have one leg amputated. When Zahra was nine, her dad met an American woman online, whom he soon married, and the whole family moved to North Carolina.There were multiple reports of child abuse from neighbors and school teachers, but the family kept moving from county to county, and switched Zahra to homeschooling, so the case fell through the cracks.

It's unknown how Zahra died. Her stepmom was discussing "doing a murder with chainsaws" online two days prior, neither she nor Zahra's dad reported her missing till over a week later, and did a whole scheme trying to mislead the police into thinking she was kidnapped. Zahra's body parts and her prosthetic leg were scattered across two counties. Stepmom eventually pleaded guilty to murder. The police found no credible evidence against her dad.


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

September 25th:
Alexis Morris
died on September 25th, 2009

6yo Alexis from Oklahoma, USA, loved to read, dress up, dance, and be rocked. She and her younger brother were staying with their dad and stepmom, and stepmom's kids. Stepmom used to abuse Alexis and her brother, but never in front of their father, and threatened to hurt the kids if they told him. Still, DHS received 17 child abuse complaints about Alexis and her brother, that came from school teachers, counselors, and a pediatrician. Still the kids remained in the house somehow.

On Friday, September 25th, 2009, 12yo stepsister of Alexis walked in on her mom holding Alexis upside down by her ankles and slamming her head against the ground, moments before she stopped breathing.


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

September 26th:
Shobhana
died on September 26th, 2016

55yo Shobhana from Kerala, India, was mentally ill. She belonged to a wealthy family who lived nearby, but abandoned her and her 26yo daughter Shruthi (also unwell). The mother and daughter slowly starved in their home without any support or care, neither from their family nor from social services (best in the country). Shobhana died of starvation. Emaciated Shruthi was found lying near her body by a member of their village council. Shruthi seemed unaware that her mother was dead, spoke in a child-like manner, and couldn't respond to questions asked. She was taken to a hospital, but her family still appeared reluctant about getting involved in her care.


Posted by Manya on February 12th, 2017

September 27th:
Uta von Schwedler
died on September 27th, 2011

Uta von Schwedler, 49yo mother of four and an HIV researcher at the University of Utah, USA, was "a renowned scientist, loving mother, beloved friend, nature enthusiast, environmentalist, biker, hiker, swimmer, camper, sister, daughter, girlfriend, and so much more," according to her family and friends. Initially Uta's death was ruled a suicide, but after more investigation and a lengthy trial, her ex husband, a pediatrician, was convicted of murder. They were having a custody battle over their four children.

Uta often took the kids hiking at Salt Lake City mountains, here's her son's words about it: "September 25th, 2011, was one of the last days of my mom's life. We were up there camping. We loved to get out in the outdoors. My mom was always pushing when we were young, taking us out on hikes. It was a beautiful day, I think the leaves may have been changing, just gorgeous. We have a picture with all of us, you know, the whole group all together. I definitely feel that that is a special place. You know, that's one of the last places I was with her. It's beautiful. And, so, I do feel that there's some sort of, like, special connection up there on the peak."


Posted by Manya on June 26th, 2016

September 28th:
Kelly Yeomans
died on September 28th, 1997

13yo Kelly was an unpopular kid who wore glasses, was overweight, sang in Salvation Army choir, and liked to help out seniors. She was bullied till she committed suicide. At first it was name-calling in school, then they started beating her and broke her glasses, and then a group of 15 or so teenagers came to her house at night, yelling at her and her mom, "Get back in there you bastards. We’re going to get you," when they looked out of the windows, and trowing stones inside. Kelly's dad called the police, but they only arrived two hours later, when the teens were gone. They came back the next night though, and the night after next, yelling insults, throwing stones into the windows, and on one occasion throwing in cake ingredients: eggs, flour, and slabs of butter. Kelly said she couldn't go on, reassured her mom, dad, and older sister that it wasn't their fault, and took a lethal dose of mom's painkillers.

If you click on Kelly's name above, you can read what her 16yo sister wrote about what happened. She says, "when our family was being tormented, no one cared much. (...) Everyone cares now and wants to help. Pity it’s too late."


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

September 29th:
Alexis Church
died on September 29th, 2015

6yo Alexis from Missouri, USA, used to have occasional girls night outs with her grandma, Mrs Church, where they'd check in a hotel for a night, spending quality time together. Alexis had some emotional issues and Mrs Church was under a lot of stress as well. One of her sons died of a drug overdose five years ago. Her 81yo mom, who had Alzheimer's and lived in a nursing home, was about to move back home, with Mrs Church as caretaker. Alexis was also in Mrs Church's custody. When Mrs Church left to pick up Alexis from school, her mom would slip out of the house and wander the neighborhood. Mrs Church sought help for depression, but the treatment was inconsistent. "I feel bad for Colleen. She's been handed more than a person can handle," Alexi's other grandma said.

Alexis was killed in a murder-suicide during one of the girls night outs with her grandma. They checked into a hotel and grandma shot Alexis in the head and then shot herself. Lt. David Wilson of the local police department said, "The mental health issues are obviously the cause for this, but did she just feel she’s the only caretaker for the child and if she’s going to take her own life, who’s going to take care of the child?"


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

September 30th:
Evan Hayden Watkin
died on September 30th, 2011

4yo Evan from Florida, USA, lived with his mom who sometimes asked her boyfriend to babysit her son. The boyfriend felt she didn't discipline Evan enough; that made him frustrated since she didn't let him discipline the boy either, so he used to beat him up when they were alone in the house. One day Evan got sick, he had fever and was vomiting. They took him to daycare and gave him some meds for the fever, but it didn't go down, so the next morning Evan's mom called an ambulance for him. Evan died in a hospital an hour later; he had a torn mesentery (a thing that holds your internal organs together), result of blunt force trauma to the abdomen.


Posted by Manya on August 27th, 2016

October 1st:
my father
died on October 1st, 2011

Dad im glad i got to know you before you passed away all is forgiven i love you with all my heart and soul


Posted by oneagleswings on April 16th, 2012

April Jones
died on October 1st, 2012

5yo April from Wales, UK, was abducted and murdered by a neighbor while she was riding her bike outside her home. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment without a possibility of parole, because April's blood and bone fragments were found at his cottage. April's body was never found, even though her disappearance prompted the largest missing person search in UK police history. Two years after the trial, Welsh government purchased the cottage where April was murdered and demolished it. Here's what April's mom said:

I want to know the truth no matter how horrific it is. I’m April’s mum and I owe it to her to find out. (...)I admit I’ve been suicidal. What mum could cope with the thoughts I have inside my head? But when I think of April’s last ­moments the picture in my head is so awful that I can’t imagine he could say anything that could possibly be worse. We know April died a horrific death but I suppose I’m just hoping that it wasn’t as horrific as I’ve imagined at my lowest points. (...)I didn’t eat or sleep properly for weeks. I was at rock bottom and having suicidal thoughts. What I have doesn’t feel like a life. I didn’t try anything but the only thing that stopped me was my two other children. They’ve lost their sister. They can’t lose their mum too.

On her ­birthday we’ll lay some flowers on her grave but we won’t celebrate. What’s the point? There’s no April to celebrate with. It would be easy to try to ­imagine what she would be like now. Would she look like her older sister, would she try to steal her make-up? We don’t go there because things are hard enough. In my mind she’ll never be nine or ten. She’ll always be five.



Posted by Manya on October 2nd, 2016

October 2nd:
Rokstan M
died on October 2nd, 2015

20yo Rokstan from Syria was gang raped. She said, "I was taken by three men. Ever since that time my family have regarded me as unclean. My mother and my brothers mistreat me. They say that I deserve to die." Rokstan fled to Germany because she feared for her life. She lived in a house for single women and worked as a translator for immigrants seeking asylum. She was murdered and buried in a shallow grave a few days after she returned to her family. Rokstan's social media profile said "I am awaiting death. But I am too young to die."


Posted by Manya on October 2nd, 2016

October 3rd:
Danny Chen
died on October 3rd, 2011

19yo Danny from Chinaton, NYC, was a US soldier bullied to death by his fellow soldiers in Afghanistan. He was the youngest, it was his first deployment, and he was the only Asian-American in his platoon. "People here are leaving left and right now, everyone is getting stress fractures and broken legs," he wrote. "All of the weaker people have either left or gone home for 30 days to heal. Now I'm the weakest one left." They called him "gook," "chink," "dragon lady." They forced him to do sprints while carrying a sandbag. They ordered him to crawl along gravel-covered ground while they flung rocks at him. And one day, when his unit was assembling a tent, he was forced to wear a green hard-hat and shout out instructions to his fellow soldiers in Chinese. After he was thrown rocks at, another soldier asked Danny if he was OK. Danny replied, "No sweat," and then shot himself.


Posted by Manya on March 5th, 2016

October 7th:
mellisa hooper
died on October 7th, 2008

she was a very good friend she lost her life because of her husband didnt want her to live and be happy she was abused all her life except noty from the man she was dating she was going to be a nurse she was a cna and loving she helps a whole lot and a very good friend that i miss very much and think of every day she is missed a whole lot by everyone


Posted by angie on June 12th, 2009

October 8th:
Birthday of Chevy Chase
born on October 8th, 1943

Cornelius Crane "Chevy" Chase. American comedian,actor,writer. Born into a prominent Manhattan family Chase would later claim he suffered physical and psychological abuse at the hands of his mother and stepfather. He speaks of how his mother Cathalene,a concert pianist who suffered herself from depression and panic attacks,would wake him up in the middle of the night to slap him "..continually and hard,across the face" He would go onto to say "I lived in fear all the time...deathly fear..I don't remember what it was for or what I had done" Chevy's half brother John said "My mother ,at her worst,was like an unleased animal.It was at her hands,in her feral states,that Chevy suffered the darkest of his secret torments". Despite the fact both of his abusers are dead Chase still can't forgive them. He says "..I always turn to it in my mind...and I'll never forgive them....you would think a grown man could shake it off..to say "I forgive you"....I don't forgive them."


Posted by eagle22 on October 9th, 2015

October 9th:
Birthday of John Cantwell
born on October 9th, 1956

Major General John Cantwell AO DSC. Retired senior Australian army officer. Cantwell was a high ranking officer with an army career spanning 40 years. In his autobiography "Exit wounds" he has written about having to hide the symptoms of PTSD for 20 years of his career. He also suffered from survivors guilt at avoiding a car bomb that killed others. He is a nationally recognised advocate for better mental health care for Australian veterans and is Patron/Ambassador of several organisations promoting veterans' mental health.


Posted by eagle22 on October 7th, 2015

October 10th:
World Mental Health Day
October 10th, 1992

Established by World Federation of Mental Health, and supported by the United Nations, this is a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy.

- More than 450 million across the globe suffer from mental illnesses.
- In the United States, people with severe mental illness die 25 years earlier than the general population on average.
- In the last 45 years suicide rates have increased by 60% worldwide.
- In the UK, 70% of people affected by mental illness experience discrimination, and discrimination is believed to be worse in developing countries.


Posted by Manya on October 10th, 2014

October 11th:
Kelsey Smith-Briggs
died on October 11th, 2005

Kelsey was a 2yo girl from Oklahoma whose parents were divorced, and each accused the other of abusing Kelsey. The first report was filed in January, and she was moved by CPS four times in six months, from one side of the family to the other, till the judge said it's unknown who's abusing her and moved her back to her mom's home. The case was monitored by CPS, yet during this year Kelsey had a broken collarbone, two broken legs, damage to her pancreas, multiple bruises and marks, and she was hurt in a car accident and sexually abused. On October 11th Kelsey was in the care of her mom's boyfriend, and died of blunt force trauma to her abdomen.


Posted by Manya on February 14th, 2016


 

If one begins all deeds well, it is likely that they will end well too.
~ Sophocles
This page was last updated on September 27th, 2017
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