October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Read and share stories to honor survivors whose lives have been changed by domestic violence.

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On October 22, 1988, I was arriving at my brother’s house for my nephew’s 5th birthday party. As I got closer to the house, I noticed ambulances, police and the media. I got out of my car, carrying my nephew’s gift. My mom came running up to me and told me that my brother, niece and nephew were dead — all shot — and my brother did it. I fell flat on the ground. Three people I loved dearly were violently taken.

I had to take care of my parents and help plan a funeral, which included finding a church to give my brother a Christian burial. Friends helped by getting rid of everything in the room where “it” happened. Five months later, my body gave out. I developed insomnia. Too much stress and crying constantly, every day, took its toll. Thirty-one years later, and I still have insomnia and grieve.

Reacting shows support for gun violence survivors.