Tag Archives: murder

The Mary Mac Show | 9/11 – 20 Years Later

In Episode 92, we remember the morning of September 11, 2001, the deadliest terrorist attack in world history and the first on American soil.

For those of us old enough to remember, this was the darkest day in American history as we watched in utter horror as four planes were used as missiles to wreak terror on our nation.

People watched in lower Manhattan as both buildings of the World Trade Center were attacked and within hours imploded killing thousands.

Many jumped to their deaths from 100 stories or more because they couldn’t breathe from the smoke and flames.

Nearly three-thousand people died that day from 90 countries. And many more over the years from those like the Fire Department of New York and the New York Police Department who succumbed to cancers breathing in the toxic fumes from the ‘pile’ they worked on to rescue and recover victims.

The FDNY, the Fire Department of New York, lost 343 trying to save others.

That day is marked in all our minds by most of us alive on September 11, 2001. It is a day where we all knew exactly where we were. And most of us were glued to our television sets.

We will carry those memories forever.

Those who were in the buildings and made it out, lost many friends and grieve for their losses along with the victims’ families.

Those who were too young to even know what this was like, below you will see video footage compiled so we never forget.

And yes it’s graphic…that’s life. This is real life. It happened. People lived through this.

And for those who have claimed a single photo ‘triggered’ them, well it’s time to get a backbone because what’s ahead for our country is not good.

We have welcomed thousands of Afghan refugees and have no idea if they are terrorists. The chances of this happening again are high.

Here are the scenes of what happened that day:

Here is the memorial today where the towers once stood:

Bless everyone who died that day and the families and friends of those victims.

Take the time to listen to the names being read each year on 9/11 to honor them.

We must never forget!

Independence Day

One of the greatest loves is love of country.

Whether it chooses you at birth, or you chose it by applying for and going through the legal path of citizenship, the allegiance one holds for its country is an honor and tribute to all the people who died to defend it.

Every country has its sovereign borders.

Every country defends itself from foreign forces.

That’s what makes a country, a country.

But when you intentionally have entities who teach children to hate their country, hate certain groups of people based upon their financial situation, their race, their religion and more, there is a pulling apart of citizenry that is harming all our citizens.

When law and order is no longer followed, even encouraged by certain politicians, we are harming our citizens.

What most don’t realize is that the cities that are crying for defunding police, are the exact cities with the most crime who need increased police presence more than most.

Homicides are rising exponentially and while we look at all these statistics, we don’t realize that in all those numbers are grieving families.

Those are human beings who are being murdered every hour of every day.

And without enough resources to solve those crimes, no justice will prevail.

On this 4th of July, our American Independence Day, I pray for these survivors of homicide victims and pray for their comfort and peace.

I pray for the safety of all Americans today and always.

We have an amazing country and my heart breaks for every single murder, all of which could be prevented.

None were necessary.

None.

Bless this country.

There is not one other country like ours.

And that’s why so many people are yearning to get here. Either the legal way, or the illegal way.

Dealing with the Homicide of a Loved One

Real Perspectives LogoAs many of you may know, many years ago my former husband’s daughter was murdered at the age of 11. This brought us on an 18 year journey to find her killer and another two years to see him brought to justice.

Recently I was a guest on LaTonya Moore’s radio show, Real Perspectives, where the conversation moved into how to not only handle grief after a murder, but other advice for how to more effectively move through the grieving process regardless of how your loved one died.

If you are dealing with the homicide death of a loved one, you may wish to listen in here.

30 Years Ago Today…

101When I look back on my life, there are a few days that stand out with such significance that I can’t help but acknowledge them, regardless of the pain.

And while there are happy days I can recall, like when I completed both my degrees, when I was given wonderful awards for my work, when my books were published, there are several difficult days that I’ve lived that caused me and those I’ve loved great trauma.

One was the death of my beloved grandmother, who lived, almost exclusively, a healthy life till her death at 93. She was my anchor when life handed me difficult times while growing up.

Another was my little dog, Daisy, who brought me so much joy every day for almost 13 years. My constant companion, she was always there to snuggle with when I needed her most.

But there was one particular day that, when I look back on my life, shaped and changed who I was and, even though I had helped so many in my life before who had struggled with bereavement, it was her death that catapulted me into leading support groups, writing books, speaking, and starting a national foundation for grieving children.

107She is Angela.

A 10 year old who came into my life when I met her father. Her older brother was then 13 and younger just 9.

I remember her bubbly personality, her courage to ask me those most pressing questions you’d never think would come out of the mouth of such a young lady. But I answered every one and she went away satisfied.

Many who knew her longer than I described her as a firecracker. And for the short time I knew her, they were right.

I specifically remember how much she loved shopping together. How she couldn’t choose between the pink or blue cotton candy.

Or the last holiday she and her younger brother spent with us. It was Easter, 1984 and I made a special dinner for us.

At one point after dinner we took a long walk together. I wanted to purchase film that day to take a few pictures but we didn’t pick it up. And that moment was lost to me forever.

Angela at 11; her last school picture.Because just a few short months later on this day in 1984, that bright, bubbly young girl was murdered on Long Island.

And what followed were 18 years of an unsolved murder.

It took until 2002 to have enough evidence to charge the initial suspect and another two years to go to trial.

We endured a six-week emotional rollercoaster from the time they began picking a jury for her 20 year old murder, to the time he was convicted.

I often wonder what life would have been like if she were still here with us. Would she have been in my bridal party when her father and I married?

Would she have studied for a college degree? And what career might she have chosen?

Would she have married and had children? How many would she have had and what would they have looked like?

But today, I guess there is a part of me that, as my stepson texted me today, which says “I can’t believe it’s been 30 years.”

And he is so right.

Rest in Peace, Angela. You were with us for far too short a time, but the impact you had on our lives, both in life and death, will remain forever.

Sandy Hook, Newtown, CT: One Year Later

The first anniversary of the Sandy Hook school shooting in Newtown, CT holds difficult emotions for the families, friends and school staff, as well as its community. Dealing with the pain of loss for the first full year is never easy.

When we approach an anniversary, we relive all the little moments before the tragedy and try to trick ourselves into thinking that person is still with us. On the days leading up to the anniversary, we, at least, get to think “the week before we were baking Christmas cookies” or “the day before we were decorating the tree.”

But once the actual first anniversary occurs, we don’t get to have that luxury any longer and we can’t fool ourselves. We can no longer say, at this time last year we were doing this or that. And that reality bring sorrow.

The first anniversary is never an easy day to live through but sometimes the anticipation is much more stressful than the actual happenings of the day itself.

I’ve known so many families (and I’ve had this experience, too) tell me they made the experiences of the day so much greater in their head than they turned out to be.

They thought they’d be devastated, but somehow it turned out to be a lot lighter than they thought it would be. It became a day of remembering the person, than how they died.

It became a day of thinking of all the fun times they spent together and being grateful for those times instead of allowing themselves to succumb to the events of that day.

So my thoughts are with the families of this small Connecticut town today and do hope that they can look for the happiness they held in the relationship they shared with their loved one and not the way they died.

Yes, it can be hard, but moving toward gratitude for those happy years spent together, will always outweigh a moment in time that can never be changed.

To read my blogs from last year when this tragedy occurred, go here. As a stepmother of an 11 year old who was murdered, I wrote them from the perspective of a grieving mother of a murdered victim.