Closure?

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Is there such a thing?  I don’t know.  I hope so.  January 14, 1999…. the day that my life changed.  The day that my sister-in-law, Anne Sleater was shot in the head while conducting a new employee interview at AT&T.  She was recently back to work after maternity leave.  At a job she loved.  Erin was 6 months old.  She was happy.  Life was good.  In the blink of an eye, everything changed.  It was a fluke.  A paranoid schizophrenic upset at the news media for reasons nobody knew, stormed the Triad Center with a gun.  Trying to find a reporter to shoot.  Instead she ended up on the 4th floor.  Where Anne worked.  And shot Anne.  She lived for 8 days and endured 2 surgeries.  We prayed, we grieved and we mourned.  But that wasn’t the end.  We have had to endure 6.5 years of competancy hearings for De-Kieu Duy (the shooter).  Hearing after hearing after hearing.  Each time she is found incompetant.  Is this justice?  I don’t know.  Will she ever be competant to stand trial?  I don’t think so. 

And so we are at today.  August 30, 2005.  The day that De-Kieu Duy is civily committed in-voluntarily to the State Mental Hospital forever (most likely).  If by some miracle she is ever found competant the hospital will contact the court and she will stand trial.   And so we move forward.  No more competancy hearing deadlines looming in the background of our lives.  No more wondering if there will be a trial.  I felt relief leaving the courthouse today.  For the first time.  And it felt good.

Today is a day to remember Anne.  To forget about the details surrounding her death, but to feel comfort in the fact that she is with us and watching us every day.  Today is the day to hug Erin extra hard and give her tons of smoochie kisses.  And to let her know her mommy loved her very much.

SHE

  • loved
  • laughed
  • lived
  • was a daughter
  • was a sister
  • was a wife
  • was a mother
  • was an example
  • loved God
  • was a true friend
  • is loved
  • is missed everyday
  • is irreplacable

Anneerin    

Ali

13 thoughts on “Closure?”

  1. shauna - August 30, 2005 11:35 am

    i’m sorry you have had to endure this. it’s something that no one should have to. i’m glad that you have some sort of closure and that you can move on as much as one can from something so tragic like that. i think that time is the only thing that will ease the pain, but the pain will never fully go away as this person was loved and will be missed always. but she is with you everyday and she lives on in erin. i’m so glad you can take comfort in that and that erin has you! i loved seeing the picture of the two of them. it’s precious and i’m sure it will be one of erin’s prized possessions as she gets older. it’s very special. i was very touched by what you said about her mom. i can see it all in a scrapbook page. i’m not sure if you are ready to do that or not yet. i know it can be quite healing. hugs and smoochie kisses to you ali.
    xoxox
    si

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  2. Christina - August 30, 2005 12:03 pm

    Anne was an incredible person and I am so grateful to have know her. She was my first “Catholic” friend and I think one of the reason’s I’m Catholic today. She will never be forgotten and you are doing an awesome job keeping her memory alive.

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  3. Amber Nichole - August 30, 2005 2:33 pm

    My heart goes out to you and your family. This is tragic in the worst sense. I cannot even begin to find the words to tell you how sorry i am.

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  4. Megan - August 30, 2005 9:23 pm

    Wow Ali, I know how much this has affected your lives and I’m so sorry for it. I can’t believe it has been so long now since this happened. Hopefully you will now be able to put this behind you. Big hugs to you!

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  5. laura - August 31, 2005 1:33 am

    ali – i saw your post on tcc about this and thought i’d stop by and let you know i was thinking about you. i know how much this has tortured you, and i know how much you anne. i am so glad that you have some closure, and i hope that you can have a chance to give erin lots of hugs and kisses soon!!!
    love, laura

    Reply
  6. NIc Howard - August 31, 2005 2:57 am

    hey Ali – Closure is hard when things just don’t seem fair. I know I’d still be somewhat angry. And just look at Erin, justifiably so. That pic of her as a baby, and as a 7yo is just gorgeous.
    Hugs, I know this is a hard time.
    nic

    Reply
  7. Laura dolphin - August 31, 2005 7:50 am

    Hey Ali! Just wanted to stop by and read your blog about Anne! What a beautiful picture of her. I know I have heard you discuss over the years about this incident and I am so pleased that your family will be able to move through to the next phase of the recovery process. You do so well in allowing Erin to know how much her mother loved her. I know that Anne must really appreciate that and all of us can only pray that we would have someone just like you if the same were to happen to us. My heart still breaks for your whole family but I am so glad that this part of the process is finally over!
    Laura dolphin

    Reply
  8. Lisa - August 31, 2005 8:49 am

    Big Hugs to you and your family. Off to make some sugar cookies in honor of Anne! (I can’t make/have sugar cookies with out thinking of her.)

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  9. Angie - August 31, 2005 9:23 am

    Ali,
    Like you said, is there ever closure? I don’t know. But, there is some piece of mind. Maybe now that can be more complete. I wish I could’ve met Anne, she sounds like a wonderful person. love and hugs to you my friend.

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  10. Rhonna - August 31, 2005 12:54 pm

    OH ALI, THIS IS SO TOUCHING.
    THANKS FOR HELPING US FOCUS ON THE GOOD.
    NO, LIFE’S NOT FAIR.
    BUT, IT’S UP TO US TO CHOOSE TO SEE THE GOOD.
    YOU DID IT!
    YOU ARE AN INSPIRATION.
    THANKS SO MUCH FOR BRINGING IT ALL HOME.
    HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY!
    CELEBRATE YOUR MEMORIES!
    XOXO
    R

    Reply
  11. Tyson - August 31, 2005 7:27 pm

    THATS AWESOME MOM. I ALWAYS HATED KNOWING IT WAS JUST HEARINGS. FEELS GOOD TO KNOW THAT

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  12. Jean - September 1, 2005 4:23 am

    Dont even know what to say ali. As i read the story again..I have tears in my eyes. I’m glad that there is some closure now and Erin is so lucky to have you and your family. That sweet little face!!! My heart breaks for her growing up without her mom. Ann was so beautiful!Keep the memories alive. Hugs to you, Ali!

    Reply
  13. marlo - September 1, 2005 12:18 pm

    Ali, I’m at a loss for words. I know you’ve shared this with me before, but reading it and hearing the pain, sadness, anger and relief in your words has me choked up. Sending hugs and love your way. Praying that your family and Erin will begin to move not without Anne. But with Anne in your hearts, memories and soul.

    Reply

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