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I am getting stronger every day. It’s been 1year...

I am not sure where to begin when starting my impact statement. One reason I never would have thought I would be writing about my best friend Madis being murdered and the impact it would have on myself and to all who loved her. Never in this lifetime would I have thought I'd get that phone call that one of my closest girlfriends had passed but not from being ill, a car accident, but intentionally murdered by someone she knew in her own home. Someone she graciously allowed in her life and he consciously ripped her from this world. That phone call changed many of our lives forever. Her children, family, church, friends, colleagues, and any other people that had known Madis and her special light.

The impact of losing Madis runs deep with many of us. Not only has her family lost a beautiful soul but her kids have been left to keep going. Engagements, weddings, grandchildren, EVERYTHING Madis and I would talk about as Mom's and look forward too. She was ripped away from us and all we have is what we can remember. Her infectious giggle, her wit, her compassion, her empathy. There is no one like her. Madis had many roles in her life. She helped her family in business, financially, spiritually. The list goes on and on. Her kids have lost their Mom and best friend. They will never get to share She's a bright light and big hug at any time. That is gone. Our lives will never be the same. My life isn't the same and I suffer everyday from losing her.

The impact of her being murdered may be similar to other close friends but I'll share what it's done to me. Madis and I shared many similarities. We have deep family roots, enjoy our careers, our kids were our #1 priority, and we enjoyed life. After finding ourselves hanging out a lot together she nicknamed us "Twinsies." So far from looking alike. She a tiny Asian and I'm a 5'10 white girl, but we always said we were "the same" inside. Two divorced Moms trying to make it through the challenges and small victories of life. We worked hard to have a good life for our kids and loved ones and tried to squeeze in fun and maybe love.. but, our true love, her true love was her kids, family, church , and friends.

To this day I am scared. As a single woman I haven't been able to get close to anyone because "do you truly know anyone?" I wake up in tears because I have nightmares of her last breath. Did Madis know she was dying? Did this monster beat her? Did she see him right before God took her? Was she in pain? I am working on persuading myself that God took her before any pain. You know, trick my mind. Ive spent countless hours trying to get this scenario out of my head and was recently told I have a form of PTSD from trauma of her death. The impact of losing my Twinsie has been truly overwhelming and lie some of us we've turned to one another or professional help to get us through the grief.

The impact of her death has made it quite impossible to start new relationships with men. Dating I guess. Like I've mentioned I never thought this would happen to anyone I knew, especially my best pal. Being trusting, optimistic, thinking you have a good judge of character like your best friend? No. I second guess every ones intentions, I do not trust a word out of most people's mouths, and my kids worry that the same can happen to me. And it could. It happened to her.

I grieve still. I still catch myself wanting to call or text her in the middle of the night when I have insomnia. Madis and I will never have that again. We spent many 2 ammoments texting or calling about our kids, our challenges, our dreams. We would share our fears, our plans, our struggles.. Never again will I be able to hear "you'll make it through this Dani," or "you can do anything Twinsie." No more being pool goofballs (she'd ride me like Shamu) , trips together, high fives in the hallway, sushi eating, her eating shrimp heads as I gag. No more fretting over our kids conversations or what movie star we have a crush on. Now I just feel pain, sadness, grief, anger, and wondering that if I knew more about this monster I could have changed the outcome. What if? What if? What if.... My paranoia remains, sadness, depression. I work on getting healthy and know it will take time.

Truly there is no punishment strong enough for the person who took Madis from us. It doesn't bring her back. I only pray for the sake of all of us that he is never out of prison to harm another being. He deserves the strongest punishment the court has for him, hopefully to be kept away from innocent people until his death.

Thank you for the honor to speak in behalf of others and for Madis,

Danielle’ Parks

Danielle' Parks

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