|Photo courtesy of John Spadaro|
For as long as I can remember, Sherry was my brother's friend, and she was one of the sweetest people in the world. Whenever Sherry called the house, she always took time to talk to me and never treated me like the annoying kid sister of her friend that I really was (I'm six years younger than my brother, which is a huge gap when the elder sibling is a teenager). Everyone who hung out in in my brother's crowd loved her, and my parents loved her too.
My brother and his friends grew up, as we all do, and while they were having careers, getting married, and raising families, they stayed in touch and remained close. Sherry got married too, and had four children with her husband. Sherry's kids range in age from the youngest who is 7 years old, to the oldest, who is 13. Sherry's family is well loved by their neighbors, known for organizing block parties and hosting play dates with other children from their neighborhood.
My brother and his wife came up to New York to see my mom and all of their old friends last month, and Sherry was among the group who came to hang out at my mother's house. Everyone was happy to spend that time together to reunite and reminisce. They did not know it at the time, but it was the last time that any of them would see Sherry alive again.
Just a few days later, on May 1st, when Sherry dropped her children off at school, none of them knew that they would never see their mom alive again, or what horror would await them when they returned home at the end of the school day. Sherry's 13 year old daughter got home first, and found that the front door to the house was locked, but the girl's father told her from the other side of the door that she needed to go get her siblings from school and bring them home. When the four children arrived at the house, the front door was still locked, but they gained entry to through a side door. The children found blood on the kitchen floor and a trail of it which led to the laundry room, which is where they discovered Sherry on the floor - she had been stabbed to death by her husband. There was a note near her body written to the children by their father telling them that both of their parents were "hurt" and that they should call the police. Sherry's husband was hanging himself in the couple's bedroom behind a locked door at the time that the children had come home upon this terrible scene; the police had to cut him down from the ceiling when they arrived and he died at the hospital.
Sherry's children are now orphans, and they will have to live with the horror of what happened forever. The kids are being cared for by relatives now, and a trust fund has been set up to help them. What has happened to these kids is beyond what anyone should ever have to endure. The relatives who are grieving for Sherry are now the guardians of four severely traumatized kids and will be dealing with the consequences of this real life nightmare for many years to come; you can help to at least alleviate one burden for them - money - by contributing any amount you can spare to the address below:
The Hayes Children Trust
P.O. Box 644
North Bellmore NY 11710
Please lift this family up in your prayers along with all of Sherry's friends who are mourning their beloved friend, and please help to spread the word about the trust fund to help Sherry's innocent children at this incredibly heart breaking and difficult time. Thank you.
Rest In Peace, Sherry. May God wrap his loving arms around your loved ones and give them comfort and strength.
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