A Mother's Grief
Mary Jane Alexander
In the beginning, I was stunned by the grief of losing
Nelson. The fact that his death was a homicide only compounded my anguish.
Unlike an accidental death or a death by vehicular homicide, survivors of
murder victims must acknowledge that someone wanted their loved one dead.
The intentionality of the crime complicates the grief exponentially.
Imagining the terror and horrible pain of Nelson's last moments haunts me to
Having a blind faith in our justice system and naively
believing that perpetrators of homicide were always punished, I was
determined that Nelsonís murderer(s) would receive justice. My belief was
strengthened by the fact that the detectives who worked on the case were
convinced of the perpetratorsí identities. My patience was strained in the
early months, as every single homicide seemed to take priority over
Nelsonís. I struggled to believe that our turn would come; that Nelsonís
murderers would eventually receive appropriate punishment. As months turned
into years and the case became cold, I began to feel that Nelsonís murder
didnít matter to those who worked on the case; that his life was
marginalized. This exacerbated my heartache even further.
In addition to coping with the violent loss of my
youngest son and the seeming indifference of the justice system, I have had
to defend my position as custodian of the life insurance money that Nelson
left for his children.
Devious attempts to gain access to these funds have
been relentless. I have been taken to court twice in unsuccessful
efforts to force me to renounce my duty as designated guardian of the funds.
Nelson left this money to his children so that they
might have the advantages in life that he never had, and I am beholden to
carry out his wishes. I am committed to protecting his childrenís money
until they are 21 years of age. This is the last thing that I will ever be
able to do for my son.
I have gradually come to realize that there probably
will never be an arrest or trial for Nelsonís murder. As difficult as this
was to accept, I now feel a certain sense of peace as I focus my energy on
remembering Nelson and honoring the miracle he was building. Helping Cindy with this website
was a step in this direction. Continued contacts with some of his loyal
friends help me to realize that Nelson is remembered. I am forever
grateful for these connections, as one of my worst fears was that he might
be forgotten. Now I know that his memory lives on in the hearts of those
who knew and loved him.
The pain of losing Nelson will be with me forever, but
the edge is softer now. He had so much to give. I mourn that his life was
snuffed out before he was able to complete his mission.
My quest for justice has diminished over the years. I
bear no malice nor do I wish for revenge toward my sonís killers. Rather, I
feel profound pity for them. Surely living with their depraved hearts must
be the worst punishment of all.