Oh, my goodness...it's finally over!
On behalf of the entire Willing family, I want to express as best as I can with mere words our deepest appreciation, greatest admiration and never-ending gratitude to the following individuals for their amazing, unprecedented compassion, dedication and persistence in bringing our sister Donna's case to justice, for whatever remnant of closure and peace of mind they were able to achieve for us, and to the rest for more personal reasons:
Annysa Johnson -- Thank you for unearthing my suppressed and concealed memories and feelings of Donna from out of my brain to start this whole thing rolling, for keeping me from abandoning my mission over several years, encouraging me despite my panic and fears, for putting my memories into print in the most loving, caring manner that I never could have imagined happening in 1,000 years, and for continuing to be one of the kindest hearts that I know in my life.
Detectives Kathy Spano & Gil Hernandez -- Thank you for everything you had to do, see, hear and investigate in order to get Donna's case into court before a judge, and for your incredible kindness and devotion to my family in doing so when we thought we'd never get answers to long-buried questions during our lifetimes. We could not have asked for more perfect detectives and/or human beings to conduct this investigation.
ADA Holly Bunch -- From the first time we met with you, I had HOPE and assurance that I had never had before, and continued reassurance during some very dark times, and that has kept me going and has made me a much better, more empathetic person over these past years. I never doubted you for a moment, even when I doubted the legal system.
From the bottom of our hearts, you will always, forever, eternally be our heroes! <3
To Donna's friends: Gretchen Beckwith, Bridgette Benavides and Lorie Stevens-Zemblowski -- Thank you for never forgetting about Donna, for contacting me to make me aware of your existence, for the precious memories of Donna that you shared with me, and for your friendship and love to this day. There should be more people like you in this world.
And to Elliott Steele -- Thank you for selflessly remaining at Donna's side that night. That is the bravest, most loving, heroic thing anyone could have done. May God bless you exceptionally for that alone. I can't express it in words because it's an emotion that can't be described. My heart breaks and cries for your memories, and for Dianne, for being forced to live with this, too.
You each have changed our lives in positive, unexpected
ways, and I/we thank God for you.