Memorial Wall : victims of domestic abuse

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This Memorial Wall is our tributes to those who have died as a result of child abuse, domestic violence, rape, religious abuse, or other types of abuse. Some of these people we knew personally, others we only heard of. Abuse is not a theoretical concept, it happens to real people, and costs lives. It's important to honor those we lost to abuse by telling their stories, so that the secret that killed them does not remain secret, and so that other lives might be saved, as a result of increased awareness.
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April 19th:
Ritu Uppal
died on April 19th, 2015

29yo Jet Airways hostes Ritu from India was watching a sitcom on TV when her drunk husband returned home with a friend and some takeout food. He wanted Ritu to serve the food and switch the channel because he wanted to watch a cricket match. Ritu refused and, during the argument, spat on her husband's face and slapped him. He started beating her up and told his friend to leave the house and not interfere in their personal matter. "As she continued to abuse my family members, I lost cool and pressed a pillow on her face to make her quiet," the husband explained. "However, a little later I realised that she was not moving and had become unconscious. I immediately called her father and after his arrival, took her to a hospital, where she was declared brought dead."


Posted by Manya on March 11th, 2017
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April 20th:
Chantille Truss
died on April 20th, 2018

Chantille Truss of Kansas City a 45-year-old woman was shot and killed by her husband on 20th April 2018 while at her place of work. Her killer fled the scene before committing suicide. Friends and co-worker were not aware of any problems within Chantile and her husband's relationship – rather describe them as appearing to be the "perfect couple".


Posted by Jane on June 29th, 2018
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April 23rd:
Melissa Ball and Grayden Lee Whitmore
died on April 23rd, 2015

27yo Melissa and her 8yo son Grayden from Georgia, USA, were shot and killed at a local convenience center by Melissa's boyfriend of 12 years, Grayden's father, who then killed himself. Their relationship was abusive, but they separated a few months prior, and Melissa was staying with her grandmother. "He threatened to kill her a lot," said Melissa's sister. "He had told her so many times, she didn't take it seriously. She knew that he was crazy, but I don't think that she ever believed he would really hurt Grayden ... I expected him to kill himself, and I even thought and mentioned it to other people that he wasn't stable and would kill them all. I told my mom a couple of weeks ago that this was going to happen, but I couldn't make (Melissa) get out of that situation."

Katora Printup, executive director of the Northwest Georgia Family Crisis Center, "We are not to judge those in these kinds of relationships, but let them know there is help. A lot of time, they are afraid to report and we want them to know that all of our services are free and confidential. The community must try to take a stand to create violence-free homes and educating and letting them know they are not alone."


Posted by Manya on March 19th, 2017
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April 24th:
Christa Ann Alexander
died on April 24th, 2005

24yo Christa Ann from Louisiana, USA and her unborn child were killed by Christa's husband of four months. He pleaded guilty to manslaughter, obstruction of justice, and first-degree feticide for the unborn baby - but never explained why did he do it. "She was a doll, I suppose you would say," said Christa's father. "She already did a total of 17 mission trips. I told someone last night that she probably did 70 years of work in 24 years."


Posted by Manya on March 19th, 2017
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April 25th:
Surjit Athwal
died on April 25th, 2007

Surjit was a Sikh woman from UK who wanted to live a more western lifestyle. Her husband was physically abusive, and she didn't like it. She also wanted to wear western clothes and go out with her friends sometimes, and she didn't get along with her mother-in-law, who wanted Surjit's kids to call her "mum", instead of Surjit. She left her husband once, and wanted a divorce, but he beat her up, threatened to kill her, and she agreed to move back together again. In 1997 Surjit became pregnant, and her husband thought it wasn't his, that she was cheating. In 1998 the mother-in-law said, "I've spoken to a contact in India. It's all going to be taken care of. It's her own fault - she's out of control. She's bringing shame on the family. We have to get rid of her." She convinced Surjit to go with her on a trip to India, where Surjit was drugged and murdered. Her body was never found and the date of death is unknown, but the mother-in-law and the husband were convicted of murder on April 25th, 2007, almost ten years later.

If you click on Surjit's name, you can read a page written by her sister-in-law, who testified against her mother-in-law, was (and still is) threatened and ostracized by her community for bringing shame on the family, and who was fearing for her own life during these 10 years of investigation.


Posted by Manya on February 19th, 2016
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April 26th:
Natalia (Beta) Trirat
died on April 26th, 2017

11-month-old Beta from Thailand lived with her mom, dad, and 5yo brother. Her dad was worried that her mom didn't love him anymore and might leave him soon. He took Beta to an abandoned building, filmed himself murdering her, posted the video on Facebook, and then committed suicide.


Posted by Manya on June 1st, 2017
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Natalie Perriello
died on April 26th, 2012

42 Mrs Perriello from New Hampshire, USA, worked for fifteen years as an elementary school teacher, and then for four more years as a high school teacher. According to her friends and family, "Natalie had two passions in her life: her family and her students. She was passionate about making a difference in the lives of her students with students continuing to be in contact with her years after leaving her classroom. Natalie truly believed that all her students would be successful, not only in high school, but in their chosen paths after high school." Mrs Perriello was shot in the head six times by her husband because he suspected her of having an affair with her former student. Their four children were in the house at the time of the murder. "I know what's about to happen to me," he told the 911 operator. "The gun is jammed anyway... it's useless."


Posted by Manya on March 19th, 2017
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April 28th:
William Horstman
died on April 28th, 2015

52yo Mr Horstman from Missouri, USA, worked various jobs as a Heavy Equipment Operator for 35 years. He enjoyed deer and turkey hunting, fishing, riding his Harley Davidson Road King, and spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren. Mr Horstman was killed by his girlfriend; she ran him over with her SUV because he wouldn't move out of the way, and fled the scene. The autopsy showed he died of blunt force trauma to his head and chest, including 20 broken ribs and massive brain bleeding. It also showed that he had not been facing her SUV at the time he was struck, police said. The woman was sentenced to 19 years in prison.


Posted by Manya on January 18th, 2018
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April 29th:
Salma Parveen
died on April 29th, 2013

22yo Salma from UK was abused by her violent husband and feared for her life. She finally asked him to leave her family home, and he strangled her with a scarf. Salma's family said, "Her life has not only been taken away from her, our lifestyle, spark and bonding of the family has also gone with her. Salma was the person we could trust with our eyes closed, the person who was always there for us, the person who we all looked up to."

Salma's story was included in the BBC2 Documentary "Love You To Death" that features interviews with friends and relatives of 86 UK women killed by their romantic partners in 2013.


Posted by Manya on March 7th, 2016
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April 30th:
Larry Martin
died on April 30th, 2013

28yo Larry from Chicago, USA, was stabbed to death by his pregnant girlfriend for not buying her a gift. Her, Larry, his 8yo son, and his adult male cousin spent the day at the local mall where Larry bought gifts for both the 8yo and the cousin, while the girlfriend didn't receive anything, even though her birthday was coming up. They had a fight on their way home, where she physically assaulted Larry while he was driving. It resulted in her leaving the three of them on the side of the road and driving home alone. When they arrived home by foot, she wouldn't open the door. Larry started banging on the door, she opened it and stabbed him with a knife, in plain view of his 8yo son. While the cousin tried to apply pressure to Larry's wound and call 911, she stood over him and said, "This is what you get for messing with me. I hope you die, mother f***."


Posted by Manya on March 19th, 2017
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May 3rd:
Yeardley Love
died on May 3rd, 2010

Yeardley Love was a 22yo student of University of Virginia, majoring in government and minoring in Spanish. She played women's lacrosse and field hockey, and dated a boy from the same school, also a lacrosse/hockey player. He had a drinking problem, and assaulted her while drunk. They broke up, but on May 3rd he broke into her apartment and "shook Love, and her head repeatedly hit the wall" (according to his testimony). Yeardley died.

Yeardley's family established the One Love Foundation to honor her memory (Yeardley wore jersey number "1" while playing lacrosse). "The mission of the foundation is to encourage and develop in children and young adults four qualities of character that Yeardley exemplified… service, kindness, humility and sportsmanship… that together add up to One Love," said Yeardley's mom.


Posted by Manya on February 14th, 2016
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