Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy 2017 (AKA Anniversary 23 -- It NEVER Gets Easier)

The crime that started it all, the actual U-Haul murders, began as a robbery at closing time on January 3, 1994, and "ended" in a double homicide after midnight.

2017 marks 23 years since the tragic killing of Keith and Peggy; the agony and loss lives on.

What do you say each year at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve to someone who lost their loved one in the most brutal fashion possible? I don't know, either; to say I'm praying for a year better than all the ones before borders consideration and insensitivity all at once but ... what's the rule on what to say?

There's no right or wrong in what you say, but there is plenty of awkward when you say nothing at all.

Victims and their families don't possess a how-to manual any more than you do, they don't even know what is "okay," themselves--they know only what not to say and usually they learn that the hard way.

Each year since 1994, the hope of a new year is always followed by (for me) sadness.

In the very early hours of January 4, 1994, Keith Allan Christopher, 21, and Peggy Ann Crawford, 37, were brutally murdered. To say that this was a most horrendous crime isn't close to adequate (a story for another time), as each judge and prosecutor prove time and time again when publicly admitting The U-Haul Murders was the worst and most memorable case they've had to handle.

The murders were followed by a literal unbelievable crime spree that lasted weeks, crossed state lines, and involved so many jurisdictions many of the crimes went unpunished. After more than 100 total convictions/guilty pleas (including capital convictions), it'd have been a waste of taxpayer money and time to hold convicted so-call U-Haul murders, Alvaro Calambro and Duc Cong Huynh, accountable for everything.

In case you were wondering (warning: spoilers!), both killers are also dead, which makes two more families I struggle to find the right words for.

"It's a new year," I say to the victims and their families and all others touched by the U-Haul Murders. Because ... what else can I say?

PS: Sign up for updates, bookmark the website, or come back every now and then to read about a few of the crimes committed but not prosecuted, as they are only briefly mentioned in the book

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