A Tennessee mother is upset over a note left at the roadside memorial for her daughter. In October 2015, 19-year-old Emma Skrabacz was killed by a drunk driver in Kingston Springs.
“He veered into her lane and struck her and instantly killed her,” Catherine Skrabacz, Emma’s mother, told WSMV. Friends set up a roadside memorial in Emma’s memory, and the items left usually bring a smile to Catherine’s face.
“I come out here at least once a week,” Catherine said, according to WKRN. “Just somewhere I can sit to remember her and feel close to her.”
But a note that she found on March 15 in front of Emma’s picture upset her.
“How long are you going to keep piling junk on this beautiful Bellevue roadside? What obviously started as a simple cross and 1 bouquet is now in plain terms, illegal littering.
The cross cannot even be seen and an enormous shiny red something that will never decay is hung up in the tree. PLEASE clean this up, for respect of the neighborhood AND your departed loved one,” the note read. Catherine was brought to tears from the note.
“I went home and sobbed for hours,” she told WSMV. “I just thought, why would someone go out of their way to be so cruel?”
The grieving mother posted a picture of the note to Facebook, and has received many comments offering support for her family and the memorial.
“It turned the tears of sorrow, which were like all day long just from the words that can hurt and devastate. It literally turned into tears of joy from reading all those comments,” she said, WKRN reports.
Since sharing the letter on social media, more people have stopped at the memorial and added items. Catherine’s family believes the note was a blessing in disguise.
“It just touches my heart and it warms my spirit so much because I know there are people that truly care and that my daughter will be remembered,” Catherine said.
A man even pulled over to thank Catherine while she was being interviewed by WSMV for the memorial because he had lost a son.
- “It turned all of those tears of sorrow into bittersweet tears of joy,” she said.
Catherine has chosen to forgive the person who left the note, because that’s what Emma would have done.
“The main thing about our daughter is her heart. She was very kind and loving, just a very happy person,” she said. The family that owns the property where the memorial is located has given Catherine permission to keep it where it is.
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