February 1, 2012


I have been struggling with this letter to you for a very long time. There is so much I could write about. The memories of a life time. Nothing I could put into words could describe the way people loved you.

I think of you every day. I think of you and the first time I met you. It was Christmas at my mom’s house in Bronson. A few days before I had just been informed that my brother had a child and I never knew of you. You were just a small girl, I can’t remember how old, maybe five or six years old. Everyone was waiting to meet you for the first time at my mom’s. I was so afraid you would be uncomfortable with so many people you didn’t know. I’d bought you a present, but I can’t remember what it was. All I can remember about that day was I felt protective of you even then, and I hadn’t even met you yet.To be so little with so many strangers hovering around you, asking you questions about what you like, don’t like, lovingly intruding into your life. I made up my mind to make sure you would feel at ease when you arrived. I had butterflies in my stomach.

My mom, (grandma), announced you were there. All of peeking at you and your mom bringing you to the door. Your mom is my friend from junior high school in Bronson. I’ve always loved your mom. She brought you in the house and said she would be back in a bit to pick you up.

You were amazing. you didn’t even flinch as you made your way into the house. You were not shy, that’s for sure! You spoke to everyone as if you had knew them all of your life. You were so at ease, talking a mile a minute, looking at everything, touching everything, and smiling. I was worried for nothing. It still makes me smile to think of you. The out-going, confident, child that made everyone smile. You were beautiful, with your dark hair and eyes. You laughed easily and enjoyed your visit with an outgoing zest.

It’s hard to believe, but you put everyone at ease, not the other way around. It was you that made everyone else in the house feel like we were always your family. When your dad married your mom, he was the happiest I’ve ever seen him. You took his last name and everyone was so happy! My friend was now my sister-in-law. Nothing could have been better. You’ve been a bright spot in our family ever since.

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February 1, 2012

Dear Vennie,

Writing this letter is so hard; I can’t believe that you are gone. I remember the first time I held you in my arms; you were only 2 weeks old. Through all those years that you guys lived with us, I was always amazed by you. I love you as if you are my own child. Your imagination and creativity never ceased to amaze and amuse me. You and Katie were our little angels. I remember how we always talked about the 4 of us being together forever. Your mom, you, me, and Katie. This is so hard for Katie; you were not just her best friend, but her sister. One of my favorite sayings of yours (and there were many) was “starin’ problem….bug in your eye”. LOL All of my kids and grandkids use that one. It has been one of Andrew and my favorite little jabs since he was young. I always laugh when I think about the plays you would write, and make all the other kids act them out for your mom and me. I am so glad to have had that day together in March. All of us together, like old times. Watching the girls ride the horse, and play with all of Damien and Katie’s kids was priceless. I am so proud of the woman you became. I will never forget our last conversation. We were talking about the girls and you said “I love them so much, I would die for them”. And you did.

I miss you so much. I know that you are gone, but I still look for you everywhere I go. Hoping for a glance of you in the faceless crowds. I guess a part of me just won’t accept it. I spend as much time as I can with your mom and the girls. I will do everything in my power to keep your memory alive for them. Until we meet again sweet child.

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January 3, 2012

Oh My Dear Venus…

I think of you often, and of your family. You are missed but I have found within each of those that I have spoken to and listened to there is a great love that has opened up and touched each of us because of you. You are engraved upon our hearts. Leaving us with a larger source of care and concern for others. I am comforted to know that you are in a much more wonderful place than we can imagine. A song I love and wish to dedicate to you is “deep enough to dream” by Chris Rice….. 

“deep enough to dream” by Chris Rice….. 

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January 2, 2012

Dear Venus,

I never had the honor of meeting you but have been profoundly touched by your story. It reminds us how precious each day we have together with our family and friends are. You will always be in my thoughts and hope your family can find solace knowing that we will not forget and we love you.

“If I die young by the Band Perry”

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January 2, 2012

Venus, an “Amazing Woman”

Although I did not know you Venus, your story touched my heart. My oldest daughter is about your age. I got involved because if it were one of my daughters missing, I would want people to reach out and help me. I have been on many searches with your Aunt Mary and others. I will continue to help search for as long as they want my help. I have met many kind people on these searches.

I attended as much of the trial as I could. The day of the sentencing I crashed on the way down, so I missed that.

I attended your beautiful memorial service. You have a beautiful family and your girls are adorable. It is obvious that you have touched many people in your short life here on earth. Your family loves you very much and are going to miss you like crazy. Your mom will reach out to you as she raises your girls and I know you will be there for her. I am sure in time your family will move forward with their lives as you would want them to, especially for your girls.

I pray every day that your remains will be found so your family can have true closure. As the minister said in your memorial service you are an “Amazing Woman”. Anyone who knows of your story knows this.

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