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Never forget the child abuse and murder victims and never forget the atrocities that made them victims. Let’s learn from history and move forward!

The Joyous Living: A to Z Challenge

Have you been following my A to Z Challenge about Child Abuse and Murder Victims? Listed are five of the most difficult cases I have shared.

Amber Hagerman (1996 kidnapping and murder victim; unsolved case)

Amber was a young Texan girl abducted while riding her bike with her brother in Arlington, Texas, and later found murdered. Her case inspired the Amber Alert and remains unsolved.

Elisabeth Fritzl & her children (1984-2008, held captive by her father in the basement; survivor!)

Elisabeth was raped and held captive by her father for 24 years in their Austrian house’s basement. Elisabeth and six of her children survived and her father/capturer, Josef Fritzl, was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Sharon Tate, Leno/Rosemary LaBianca, and all the victims of Charles Manson (1969, murdered).

Sharon Tate is one of the most famous murder victims due to her marriage at the time to filmmaker Roman Polanski, who himself is known for sexual abuse. She and her friends were brutally murdered by Charles Manson’s followers. Soon after their murders, Leno and Rosemary LaBianca were also murdered. The Manson murderers were all sentenced to the death penalty – later changed to life imprisonment.
Sylvia Likens was a young woman who was sexually assaulted, tortured and murdered in 1965 after her father left her in the care of Gertrude Baniszewski. Unfortunately the Baniszewski family of criminals got off with barely a slap on the hand.

Diane Downs’ children: Cheryl (murdered), Christie (shot/stroke), and Danny (shot/paralyzed) (1983)

Diane Downs was no victim. In fact she was the murderer and attempted murderer in this case. However, due to her infamous popularity I lead with her name. She killed her eldest daughter, Cheryl, and attempted to murder her other two children, Christie and Danny, one dark evening while they were out driving.
The story was made into a movie starring Farrah Fawcett.

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