, Newburyport, MA

January 14, 2014

Concern for repeat of tragedy

Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

Columbine, 9-11, Sandy Hook and the murder of my friend Beth Brodie have been the defining tragedies in my life. Yet it is the story of Beth Brodie that forever shook my foundation the most. I have recently relived the moments when the variety store employee told me how she died. I vividly recall stumbling to my mom’s car to tell her. I can still hear the anguished sobbing of us teenagers while we hugged and shook. The wake was perhaps the most difficult memory. The closed casket and hushed conversations at the wake being pieced by the scream of her little sister defined those terrible days.

I remember.

For 21 years we all attempted to suppress those awful memories, comforted that Beth’s killer could not murder any other beautiful soul. No chance for parole provided only a tentative consolation that at least Beth’s passing was not in vain. We held on to the belief that certainly no other would ever be taken by her murderer. Or so we thought.

Now these wounds, which were carefully bandaged over, are raw again. Due to the Mass. SJC’s heart-wrenching ruling, Beth’s killer will be offered the opportunity to re-enter society.

This is a travesty and it has deeply shaken my faith in the justice system. I fear that we will once again relive unspeakable tragedies.

I pray that there are those who can help me overturn this ruling so I can regain that faith again.

Sabrina Condon

Brewster, N.Y.