Forgiving the Dead Man Walking

What would it take for crime survivor Debbie Morris to finally find peace?

The slight blonde woman who greets me warmly at the door of her suburban Cincinnati home this breezy Thursday morning quickly offers me a cup of coffee and a seat at her kitchen table. Her husband, Brad, is taking care of their children, she assures me, so it's a kid-free zone. As we make small talk, Debbie, author of Forgiving the Dead Man Walking (Zondervan), casually mentions how she stashes all her Creative Memories paraphernalia in an upstairs "messy" bedroom. The poignancy of that image—Debbie devotedly documenting happy times in albums for Conner, 4, and Courtney, 1—floors me. After all, Debbie, 35, has spent the last 19 years of her life overcoming some of the most horrific memories imaginable.

At age 16, Debbie (then Cuevas) of Madisonville, Louisiana, and her boyfriend, Mark Brewster, were sitting in a parked car one hot summer night when they were abducted at gunpoint by career criminals Robert Willie and Joe Vaccaro. Several hours into the kidnapping, a gun-whipped Mark was led into deserted woods near the Alabama state line, tortured, shot, slashed, and left for dead. But the ride of terror continued for Debbie, who never knew from moment to moment if she would live or die. For a total of 30 hours, Debbie was repeatedly raped by her captors. Throughout that time, she also picked up some chilling clues that led her to believe they had brutally murdered a young woman several days before—Faith Hathaway.

Subscriber access onlyYou have reached the end of this Article Preview
To continue reading, join now for free and get complete access.
orJoin Now for Free
Free CT Women Newsletter

Sign up today for our biweekly newsletter: Lifework Newsletter. Explore God’s purpose for women in their career and calling as a means to influence culture and community.

Read These Next


For Further StudyFor Further StudyDownloadable resources to go deeper

Comments

Join in the conversation on Facebook or Twitter

May 25

Follow Us

More Newsletters

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
RSS
Email