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You're invited to honor your loved one on this board in any way that helps you deal with your grief whether it's a story, poem, link to a memorial site or sharing feelings about your loss.  Memorial candles are displayed at In Memory of Ben - Memorial Candles and will stay lit as long as this site is alive.
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Re: Re: Toyanne

Thank you.There seems to be some healing through God.I can't take back what my son did,I wish I could understand.I hope no one takes this the wrong way,but you must know in order for me to receive forgiveness from God,I have to forgive my son.Hard as it is,I forgive him.I hate what he did more than anything in this world.I miss her terribly.But without me forgiving him,I will not be forgiven,and I will also become biiter and mean.That said,I really hate what he did to her,himself,and me.I still love him,and don't for the life of me know why sometimes.God bless.



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Replying to:

Wayne, I am so sorry for your loss. There is no way anyone could understand what you must be going through. To be without your wife and your son being he is now serving a sentence. Wayne, your poem describes so much of what we all must think about to some extent in the loss of our loved ones. My Mother was 71 and passed in April. She had surgery and things did not go as hoped. It still was a shock to our family even at her age and very difficult for us. My life will never be the same without her, she was my best-friend and I mean that with all my heart. But there is a big difference between my Mother's passing and the loss of your wife and child. And I hope you know that I see the difference. But even in my situation the only thing that is seeing me through is my faith in the Lord. It is hard to not have answers as to "why" God did not intervene. But I believe that even in the worst of situations there is a higher cause or reason. I'm sure you've heard this before...we can only see a slice of the picture when God sees everything and knows all. In the midst of this tragedy, Wayne I hope you will be able to dig your heels in and keep your faith in God. Trusting Him is what sees us through. We can either go through these very difficult times without answers - with Him - or without Him. I can't imagine going through this process without Him. Thank God, for His Son, Jesus Christ, who gave up His life so death has no hold for those who believe in Him. One day, we will see our loved ones again because of our faith in Christ. Through my Mom's passing, I learned even so much's not how long we live, it's "how" we live and what legacy we will leave behind. Because we are all going to physically die someday. I pray that through my life and even through my physcial death that there will be those who will come to Christ as their personal Savior and Lord - that they may receive the free gift of salvation. It's only in doing so that we receive eternal life and know that death has no power or hold on us. My Mother is not here, but I know where she is and I will see her again one day to never go through this pain of loss again. What GREAT HOPE that is!!! My prayers are with you. And I am so sorry for all you must be going through. Like I said in the beginning, there is no way I could possibly understand. May God hold you and hold you up in every day and every moment. God bless you, Barbara

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Replying to:

My name is Wayne Hightower.On feb 26,2003,my 16 year old son shot and killed my wife,his mother,while she slept on a sofa in the living room.He was sentenced to 40 years.She was the only woman I had ever married,he was our only son.My entire family,gone.I am heartbroken.I am devastated.I awoke from a nightmare with this in my head,I have cried and cried since it happened,and doesnt seem to get better.Thanks for letting me get this out.peace.W.H.

as she slept

was she having sweet dreams?

as she lay there



if god knows all

and the book is written before you or i were even born

if god knows all

and free will is the wild card

if god can do anything

but did not choose to stop this

as she slept

then please

tell me god

was she having sweet dreams?

written june 13 2003,by Wayne Hightower

Re: Re: Re: Toyanne

I can only imagine how hard it must be to try to make any sense out of what your son did. That is something you may never be able to resolve, but I am glad to hear that even through this very difficult time you have chosen to forgive him. I agree with you that in order to be forgiven we must forgive. I believe you are able to forgive your son because as believers we understand it is more a "choice" to forgive whether our emotions line up or not. And I am also so very happy to hear you still love him. Again as Christians we learn to hate the sin and love the sinner. I pray that through your forgiveness and love that you have for your son that he will come to know the saving grace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and seek forgiveness for himself. Do you visit him? If you do, that must be very hard. Try to remember that if you choose to, he may come to know Jesus through you. And I must say, I agree with you that by not forgiving you take the risk of becoming bitter and mean. Forgiveness is not just for the offender but for the one offended. If we "don't let go" and "let God" do what He needs to do within us bitterness can take root and destroy us. But when we realize the grace and mercy God showers upon us, it's very humbling and we realize that we are called to do the same.
Tomorrow will be 3 months since my Mother was called home. At times I still can't believe she's not going to show up somewhere. I miss her so much.
Again, I am so sorry for your loss. May God continue to make Himself known to you in ways you've never known and may His peace that passes all understanding be yours.
God bless you,

I am so terribly sorry Wayne.

Hello Wayne,
I hope that you get a chance to read this. This is Gerald Mendoza, I am not sure if you remember me or not, but I was David's best friend even through this horrific tragedy. I am so terrible sorry that he has put you through all of this grief. I would not wish this upon anyone. I know I have only met you a few times, but I would like to get together sometime with you if that is ok? I would like to just sit down and talk. I have so many things to tell you, but if you do not want to hear them, then I will not bore you. I have, also, cried many nights, even though there be not as much a reason that I do, I have. I dreadfully mourn David, and even though I didn't know her very well either, Toyanne's loss too. I think if I was not grounded, and not allowed to use the phone, then I could have talked David out of it. If anyone could have im sure that I could have. I have also seen him a few times since this tragic event happened. I know this doesn't make me sound like a good person, but I saw him while I was in JDC, and even though I got out, eventually he will too. I also saw him while I was at Trinity Springs. Those two times gave us a lot of time to talk about things, and I'm not sure, but you know how some things you feel most comfortable talking about to your best friend? Well, since then I moved in with my grandparents,lost every one of my friends,and my family hardly visits. Even though the living standards here are much better, there is just a lot that I miss back home, what I am trying to say is, sometimes you just need a friend to talk to. Seeing as though I don't have any out here, I was wondering If you and I could maybe get together sometime. For old times sake, I do not wish to replace your son, I just want to have someone to talk to, who shares many problems I share. Your Poem really touched me, in a way that nothing has ever touched me before. I believe that it will help my life for the better. Every time I read it though, it reminds me of this event, and how horrible it was. I hope you didn't think that I was a bad kid or anything,because I really am not. I am a quiet person who mostly keeps to himself. Wayne, if you are out there, please respond to me.
With love and compassion,
Gerald Mendoza

Website: slapdicksmyband,2

Name of loved one and dates: for toyanne, yes

Re: I am so terribly sorry Wayne.

Gerald,thanks for caring.No,I dont think you are a bad kid-I never thought any of you were.We always tried to be sympathetic to all of you.We all have problems,and D.s' just got to him more to the point where he lost touch with reality.I never judged any of you.No,I didnt agree with all the things you all did--what parent does agree with everything their child does.That being said,there were several people involved in this who NEVER will live that down in my mind.You aren't one of them.And dont worry about the rest--God says I must forgive them,and so I do.Period.I dont accept the influence they played in my son's self destruction,however,and I only hope that they find some place in their lives where they can deal with the part they played in an innocent woman being murdered.But finding God has helped me deal with my loss.It hasnt dulled the pain,but in time I will learn to heal.Peace,Gerald,and I will be in touch.

Re: Re: I am so terribly sorry Wayne.

Hey Wayne, Thanks for not thinking that I am a bad kid. I just have some problems, as well as everyone else in this world does. I am trying to keep in touch with David, but he hasn't responded to either one of my letters. Its ok though, I am sure he will, in time. I just wish that there was some way that I could help. I don't know how hard this must be on you, I can only say that I feel horrible for what has happened to you, and that if there is any way that I can help, I will be more than happy to. It is good that you forgive them, that is the first step in healing. This whole episode had made me find God also, while I was in jdc I realized a lot of the mistakes I made, and that my life was not going in the direction I wanted. I went to all of the bible studies in jdc, and I had the preacher's pray with me after class. It has helped me a lot. I have been talking to Rhonda a lot, she is a very nice person. Oh and if you are going to sell David's stuff, please consider selling it to me. I wouldn't want to lose memories...Well, Wayne, If there is anything that I can do for you, or if you just need someone to talk to, please, I am here. My number is (972) 625-9127 if you ever want to talk, And I live in The Colony, TX. Its not too far away from where I used to live. About an hour away. Hope to hear from you, and again, I am sorry that I have not been there at any point in this...
Later Wayne,

Website: slapdicksmyband,4

Name of loved one and dates: yes