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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Stephen Venable

In memory of Billy Venable and Bill Venable

My dad Billy Venable and brother Bill were killed on January 13, 2004 in a random home burglary attempt.

My dad was a football and wrestling coach. As you might imagine, my siblings and I grew up wrestling with each other on a daily basis.

My youngest brother Bill was no exception. He was the baby of the family, in the best way possible, but that didn’t stop him from wrestling with his older siblings. As the oldest, I was proud of my undefeated record against my Bill.

Undefeated, that is, until the last Thanksgiving we spent together. Bill was 17, a senior in high school and a center on the football team. He had grown up!

As we were waiting for our Thanksgiving meal, one of our wrestling matches started. I don’t remember exactly what happened, but the next thing I knew I was staring at the ceiling, “counting lights.” Bill had pinned me.

I think my dad was most excited about it as we (he) told and retold the story at dinner and over the next few days.

I’ll never get to wrestle Bill again, but his big win is my Moment that Survives.

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