Monday, July 8, 2019

4 Years Ago Today

4 years ago, today at 9 am my son and I picked a very excited Shanny up from the airport. She was happy to be home, she missed so many things about home and she was so excited. She missed Dutch Bros coffee and being surrounded by green. California just didn’t have enough green and San Diego didn’t have Dutch Bros but she was happy with San Diego because it was closer to home then some of the places she could have been stationed and it had sunshine. She was excited to see her friends, some of whom would have been camping out in my house for some of the time she was home. She was excited to attend the wedding of her cousin and then the wedding of one of her friends. She was excited to go on the road trip Doug and I had been planning for months.
4 years ago, today Jerod and I had our last trip with Shanny to Dutch Bros. 4 years ago, today Doug, Jerod and I had our last lunch date with Shanny. 4 years ago, today I took my last pictures of Shanny.

 4 years ago, today at around 5 pm, Jake Wright was driving my daughter, Shanny, home after hanging out for a few hours when two stoned unlicensed teenagers, Kevin Milanez-Gomez and Dianna Muniz, who supposedly took the car without consent, barreled through a clearly marked stop sign murdering both Shanny and Jake.

Today life is different.

Today I know DA Brad Berry is a liar and that DDA Alicia Eagan is no better, they both should be investigated and disbarred. I know that only one of my daughter’s killers is in jail serving 6.3 years (5 years if you count time off) for killing 2 people and the other is living it up like she did nothing wrong.

Today I wait. I wait for the parole notice so I can try and stop Kevin Milanez-Gomez from getting out of prison early. I wait for the police to enact policies that ensure citations are written for crashes where a death is involved. I wait for the day the Brad Berry is kicked out of the DA’s office for his lack of moral character. I wait for the legal system to wake up and punish Dianna Muniz for her part in Shanny and Jake’s deaths. I wait for Gabriela Gomez to admit to lying to protect her son from punishment for the crimes he committed. I am waiting for Kevin and Dianna to each actually grow a conscience and own their actions.

Today I watch. I watch my family dealing with the loss of her the best way they can. I watch Facebook and see that Dianna still lives her life like she never killed anyone or was even in a car that killed someone. I watch life going on around me wishing the Shanny was able to be a part of it. I watch the rosebush planted at the memorials finally blooming.

Today I hug a box that contains Shanny’s ashes and I write to her in a journal where I also put every
Dutch Bros sticker that I collect every month for her.

Today I still cry every time one of her favorite songs plays or I see pictures of her. I cry because I miss her voice. I cry because I miss watching Vampire Diaries and Coyote Ugly with her. I cry for the life she should have had. I CRY because I miss her so much, I can’t contain the pain of her not being here.

Today I talk about our experience with anyone that will listen in the hopes that what happened to us never happens to another family. I talk about our experience with anyone that will listen hoping that better police procedures will be enacted to ensure investigations aren’t mishandled. I talk about our experience with anyone who will listen in the hopes that people with honor and better moral character will replace Brad Berry. On this I could go on and on.

Tomorrow I will continue to cry. I will continue to wait. I will keep watching. I will continue to speak out. I will continue to write to Shanny.

Thursday, June 20, 2019


I have been in a living, breathing nightmare for what will be 4 years on July 8th. I know the nightmare will never ever go away and that it is more about learning how to be happy even while your sad. But then one of the antagonist in my nightmare always seem to pop up and make it worse.

I used to sleep well and would be well rested and rarely needed a nap but for the last 4 years I don't sleep well, I am always tired and sleep every chance I get because I always wake up  often now. I love the nights are dream free or I should say nightmare free. I like the dreams where Shanny is talking my ear off, sometimes she cries because she wasn't given enough time, sometimes I cry because she should never have died in the first place, but we always have good conversations, I can remember every dream more like bits and pieces, but I value those bits and pieces.

Then I wake up and reality sets in. The reality is that Shanny is in an urn in my living room and she will never dance around my house, wake me up in the middle of the night because she wants a coffee run and she will never give us hugs again. The reality is legal system failed not just Shanny and Jake but any future victims of their killers. The reality is their killers didn't give a shit about anyone or any thing but themselves when they got into that car they had no right to be in.

I have always trusted in our legal system, even when it sent one of my brothers to prison. I always tried to follow the rules even when I thought they were stupid. Now I have no faith in the legal system, it is such a failure, How can I have faith in a system that can let someone kill 2 innocent people then give them a slap on the wrist.

Sorry for the rambling, but I got some bad news tonight that got me thinking about this nightmare that is my reality and wondering if I will ever be able to get through a day with feeling angry, frustrated and disappointed. I want the happy that I had when my family was all accounted for but since I will never have that again I want to learn how to be happy and sad at the same time so that the rest of my family wont have to worry about the crazy that has moved into my head and heart.

Thank you for listening 

Saturday, June 8, 2019

My Thoughts Are Eating At Me

For the last week I have had a few words floating through my head. I should be working on what I want to say about the books I have read, so I can get reviews out, but the words keep popping up. 

deep sorrow, especially that caused by someone's death.

It's funny the definition of grief online says the word is a noun. I suppose it is but when you’re in the grips of feeling it the word seems like it is more of a verb or even and adjective. Grief feels like a living breathing entity that moves into your life and never leaves. “Deep sorrow” is that even close to accurate, are there even any words that can even remotely describe what grief truly feels like? I am being to doubt that there is any word that can remotely come close to describing what losing a child feels like. Shit, the word ‘grief’ doesn’t even come close to describing how and what I feel.

After thinking about this definition for a while I went back to the internet and found the five stages of grief. Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. I think of these words and what they mean especially in the big picture of what, where and how Shanny died.

Denial… was in denial when it happened, probably but I can’t remember, the whole first year after she was killed felt like a bad dream and is pretty hazy in my memory. Now, yeah it is still hard to believe she is gone. I hate that she is not here.

Anger… I am so fucking angry every time I think about it. I am angry with Kevin Milanez-Gomez and Dianna Muniz for killing Shanny and I am angry with their parents for not teaching them right from wrong. I am angry with the Yamhill County Sheriffs office for their lack of due diligence which contributed in Kevin getting a lite sentence for killing 2 people while Dianna was let off the hook. I am angry with the District Attorneys office whose DA and DDA for their lies and false promises of justice all the while doing everything in their power to get Kevin off the hook. Yep, still angry, even 4 years later.    

Bargaining… was a rather moot point because I could fix a lot of things for my kids, if they needed my help but I can’t fix dead, the only thing I could do was try to get justice, that is if the justice system actually worked and the DA’s office wasn’t so corrupt.

Depression… hmmmm, yep, I recon that is there to. There are days that it hurts so bad that I can’t breathe and my heart physically hurts and forget trying to control the water works. Those days I just want to stay home and if I am not home, I just want to go home. I also want to make my other children come home and never let them leave.

Acceptance… Really?!!! Seriously, how the fuck does anyone learn to accept the death of one their children. Who ever thought of that one was either stupid or had never lost a child because if they had they would know there is no acceptance of that. BECAUSE IT IS NOT ACCEPTABLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There was one word that comes to mind that was not in the article I read but they probably figure it can fall under Depression. I think it should have its own place in the stages of grief but it actually fits in other ways when you are a parent. The word is GUILT

Guilt… From the moment we conceive a child we promise to love our children with all our hearts. We promise to protect our children with everything we have, and when something happens to them, we feel the guilt of not being there to protect from it. I get that we can’t always be there but we always try to make it better/right. I wasn't there to save Shanny, I was at home waiting for her to come home. How can someone make it right when the outcome isn’t a broken arm but death? How does someone make it right when the people that are suppose to represent the victims actually turn their back on the victim to protect those that created the victims in the first place? How do you make it right when the people that are suppose to represent the victims make it worse by victimizing the victims even more? 

Monday, May 6, 2019

Saturday, May 4, 2019


Today we had the planning meeting for Shanny's Run and we have a lot accomplished, the route still needs mapping out but hopefully we will have that done by next Friday. I got the registration form done and am waiting for feedback from the rest of the committee before publishing it. The swag bags are coming along and I am excited about how things are shapping up.

The hardest part of working on Shanny's Run was picking a picture for this years event page on Facebook. I couldn't find the picture I really wanted to use but I did find a good one from basketball. See the pictures and remembering all the great times the pictures represent was good but it is always followed by a very painful ache in my heart because I miss her so much and I want my little girl back so she can make more memories with all of us.

Why is is that look at pictures and remembering great things is always followed by the pain of her being gone. My hearts hurts so much it makes the rest of me physically hurt.

If Kevin Milanez-Gomez Dianne Muniz had done the right thing and not gotten high and had stayed out of that car my child would be alive and well living her adventures. 
Picture I chose for this years Facebook Event 

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Arizona and Nevada Part 2

Saturday, we left early for Vegas to hang out with our daughter, Kara’s, boyfriend while she was busy with Maid of Honor stuff. We picked him up from the Excalibur then went looking for the Chapel of the Flowers where the wedding we were attending was being held. Then went looking for lunch and found a Carl’s Junior about a block away, it stank and needed cleaning but it was food. Then walked back to the chapel and waited for the wedding party to arrive.

Katie was absolutely beautiful and their ceremony was wonderful. Katie and Zack will be an amazing married couple and we are very happy for them. The reception was held at the Excalibur in the Italian restaurant, oh my gosh, there was so much food and a lot of nice people. After the reception we hung out with Kara and Luke before heading back to Kingman.

Funny thing is, the whole time we were enjoying the wedding there was this underlying sadness that I felt before at 2 other weddings. With the first two it was more about Shanny not being there to see the weddings as she had planned to. The thing the three have income though is the fact Shanny will never have a wedding of her own. This time it was easier to keep those thought at bay until we were on the way back to Kingman. The large group was another hard part used a game on my phone to help me cope with being around so many people. As soon as we got back to Kingman I sat down wrote out all the positive things that happened on Saturday in the journal to Shanny.
Sunday, went to the car museum in Laughlin at a casino, I can’t remember the name of it but there some very old cars there, I really liked the tow truck. We also went out to breakfast at a restaurant called Grandpa’s that took a long time but the food was worth the wait, yum. We also visited a swap meet where I found a bird I wanted to bring home but I am pretty sure Doug would have said no and it’s long drive I am not sure it would have survived the ride home with us and Trip.

Monday, while we were loading up the car, Trip kept jumping in and out of it like he was either rushing us to get packed up or making sure we didn’t leave him behind like we did on two of our adventures. LOL maybe is was a little of both. We hit Tonopa, Nevada in time for lunch and stopped at this place called the Banc Club and Doug went in to order us lunch wile I walked Trip. He ordered us the lunch special of Orange Chicken, ugh, the fried rice was as inedible as it looked and the chicken tasted nothing like orange chicken and the egg roles were gross, we didn’t finish it and tossed it at the first rest stop we came too. We booked a room at the Harrah in Reno, when we decided we didn’t want to drive clear to Klamath Falls in the dark and Doug had always wanted to stay there at least once (since he was a kid). The room was pet friendly and the food from the noodle place was decent. The only three problems we had were the place for dogs to do their business outside was to small and had no grass, then of course there was the additional exorbitant charge for the pet friendly room and the noisy people (who wanted to party until dawn) in the room next to us. The room was clean and roomy and Trip did well except when the neighbors got loud.

Today, we are on the final leg of our rode trip and should be arriving in Klamath Falls before to long. Then from there. home, so far, we have had to hit almost every rest stop, thanks to whatever I ate yesterday, so I am uncertain our exact return time. I am eager to see my Grandpuppy but I am not looking forward to going back to work.

As I was getting this post ready to go live Doug was pulled over by a nice officer who only gave him warning. 

4 Years Ago Today

4 years ago, today at 9 am my son and I picked a very excited Shanny up from the airport. She was happy to be home, she missed so many ...