Artwork of Sandra Kuck

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Amber Linn's Story

I decided to use the essay I wrote in my English class to tell my story, it explains almost everything. However, I may throw a few more things in. So, please excuse the order of events. I know that some of this may seem a little mixed up. But when I wrote the paper it came from my heart. Dealing with the loss of Amber has been one of the biggest challenges of my life. No one ever expects to lose a child, I know I did not. The circumstances surrounding my daughter's death are not unusual these days; however, it completely changes how I feel about her death. If Amber had died a "Normal" death, I probably would be able to handle it much easier. The fact that she was murdered though, changes my perspective, which makes it almost unbearable. This whole ordeal started when I was fourteen years old. I was getting ready for the annual church picnic on Labor Day. I had spent the nite at my friend Carrie's house. My friend's sister, Nikki came into the room and informed us that her friend Chris was meeting her at the park. I had met Chris before, although I do not remember when. I had this feeling he liked me, which made me feel quite important. He was seventeen and I thought he was so cool. When we reached the park, my friends and I went for a walk. When we got back, Chris and Nikki were standing there talking. We said our hello's and then went on to eat our lunch. A few days later I was at Carrie's house again. Nikki had invited Chris over also. He asked me for my telephone number and I gave it to him. That nite we talked for hours. Needless to say, I ended up dating Chris by the end of February 1993. By the end of May I was pregnant. Here I was, fifteen, pregnant, and with a complete loser. When I found out that I was pregnant, Chris was visiting his father in Seattle. The day I told him I was pregnant was Father's Day. I thought he would be happy, but instead he was completely annoyed by the prospect of becoming a father. He thought at the age of eighteen he would be able to have his fun and not worry about me, I had my parents. I do not remember how we ended up working it out but we decided to stay together and be a family. Around the first of August he flew here to Fresno and we began the preparations for our wedding. Since I have pushed most of the memories from my mind, I do not remember the day we married. We then moved into our apartment where we stayed only one month. At which time he remarked that he was sending me home. He barely worked at all during our one month together, so I knew that he would not make a good provider. The Lord only knows why I stuck around. Once we were living back at my parent's house, Chris took it upon himself to leave for a week. No one knew his whereabouts and he never called. Then, one day, he showed up, knocking my Mom down as he came through the front door. There is no telling where he had been, he was still wearing the clothes he had left in, and he was on who knows what. At that point, my parents had enough, so they called his Mom. After much debate on my part they decided he needed to go stay with his father in Washington. When he arrived there he got a good job, and even went to church and became active there. I went up to visit him during Christmas of that year. During those three weeks there, I had enough of our relationship and decided once I was home I would file for a divorce. Chris was just acting, he had a girl he was seeing and I found out. Needless to say I procrastinated, waiting until Amber was four days old before I filed. Not only did I go through my pregnancy without him, I went through labor without him also. I had my Daddy and my labor coach and cousin Valerie. All forty six hours, pain and all, experienced without him. Now looking back, I am so glad he wasn't there. I didn't call him when she was born. My brother had reminded me that he didn't care when I called to inform him I was in labor, so why should he know she had been born. I called him as soon as I knew for sure that I was in labor. I thought he would be so excited. His only comment, " Call me when it's over". The next day my Mom tried calling to see if she could do something. He wasn't there, so she spoke with his father. He quickly informed her that Chris had more important things to attend to. What is more important than your child's birth? I filed for my divorce when Amber was four days old. I went to my parent's attorney and in great detail told this stranger about my short married life. I had to have my Mom leave the room because there were things I did not want her to hear. I was granted the divorce after about one and a half years of trying to get him to accept the papers. The day before I filed he called. He asked how "HIS" baby was. I said she was fine. He didn't even know she had been born until he heard her cry in the background. I told him I was going to file for divorce, and that I never wanted to hear from him again. He tried calling but I always ignored his calls. Chris did not see Amber until she was two years old. In January of 1996, my brother and I had a deep talk. After those years of being satisfied without Chris in our lives, I suddenly found myself feeling that he should know his daughter. Amber had grown into a rambunctious little squirt. Although she looked like Chris I did not miss him. Then one day in late February I called him. After talking a while, we decided that Amber needed to know him. I did not want my daughter to go through the pain of growing up without a father. Easter of that year he flew down here to see her. My father had no knowledge of Chris and I talking; however, my mother did. My poor Mom, she always did get stuck in the middle. I was glad when my parent's went out of town that weekend. That meant that my father would not know of my plans, being that he resented Chris tremendously. Needless to say, we ended up back together. I knew that I wouldn't be happy in a long distance relationship, but I was doing it for my daughter. In April, Chris' step mom, Mary, called to see if Amber and I would move up to Seattle. She explained that Chris needed some stability in his life. Some responsibility. I said yes, and the very next day Amber and I left, much to the shock of my Dad. Chris had no idea that we were even coming. After the shock wore off a bit, we settled into our new life. Three weeks later we had our own apartment. That is when everything started. We began to fight and he hit me on numerous occasions. Once he even put a knife to my throat. Thank God our friend was staying with us and he pulled Chris off of me. Amber sat there and watched the whole thing. With the mind control that this man had over me, I was so afraid of him. He told me that if I ever left him he would kill Amber, my family and myself. This stuck in my mind, I reluctantly stayed with him. Chris then began to take things out on Amber. I never personally saw him do anything to her, but I heard things. The one thing that really bothers me is that people around us saw things and never told me or his family. They saw him hit her, blow marijuana smoke in her face, knock her down in the bathtub and other things. And no one had the guts to say anything. I went straight to his Dad the day I found that he had spanked her so hard that he left her bruised all the way from the top of her butt to the top of her groin. His father, my brother, my ex sister-in-law and a few friends were the only ones who knew about this. Chris' father wanted me to let Amber stay with him and Mary until I could get out. That was the biggest mistake of my life. I should have taken him up on the offer. But I felt that she should be with her Mommy. Before I left for work that day I told Chris that I was leaving him. I told our roommate Travis to watch her while I was at work that day. Amber loved Travis, so I had no worries about leaving her with him. He promised he would watch her, and I left to the sound of my baby screaming for me not to go. Amber was a bright child who sensed her father hated us. She often cowered when he came into the room. That nite when I got off of work, Chris was there to pick me up. Amber was unconscious in the car. He explained that she had fallen off of the couch and hit her head. The sad thing is that in my shock I believed him. I begged him to go to our house, which was only a block away to call an ambulance. He said that he didn't want to pay the money for it, so he proceeded to drive to the nearest hospital. They took her in immediately. Once the doctors evaluated her they came and told us that she had to be airlifted to Harborview Hospital in Seattle. Once there Amber went directly into brain surgery to reduce the swelling on her brain, and Chris and I were separated and questioned by the authorities. Through out the nite and through the next day I believed his tale. Then came the moment of truth when I saw him moving his hands as though to shake someone. He was confessing to his father and the preacher. It was in that moment that I knew my daughter was there because of him. After I was told that my daughter was going to die, Mary called my parents. It was 5:30 am on June 5, 1996. My Dad came home from work and called my brother. He was down in San Diego fighting a big forest fire. Once he was able to get off the fire line he flew to Fresno, where he and my Dad flew on to Seattle. I'll never forget the moment I saw my Dad. I burst into tears and fell into his arms. It was then that Scott went to look for Chris. I had told Chris to leave. Thank God Chris never got to see Amber again, because he never deserved to have such a precious angel. My brother never went to see her. After being told that the surgery and all other attempts to save her life didn't work, my father and I got to hold her. I sat with her alone first. Holding her, taking in every detail of her beauty, I knew it would be the my last chance at holding her and kissing her. I just cradled her and cried. That was the most painful moment of my life. Then my father came in. He sat in the rocking chair and the nurse placed her in his arms. He just sat there rocking back and forth, hunched over, sobbing like I've never seen a grown man do. My life and my angel was gone. I left the hospital with nothing but the quilt some wonderful ladies had made and given to her. Chris turned himself in on Wednesday. He made three formal confessions, admitting to throwing her down repeatedly on the floor. All because she wouldn't sit down so he could put her shoes on. In the hospital I was asked to donate some of her organs. And now a few more people live today because of my daughter. I know that she lives on through these people. Coming home was the hardest. Here I had to face my best friend, my Mom. Her pain, so evident all over her face, killed me inside. Sad isn't it? A father has his child just two months and kills her. In 1997 we went to trial. I sat on the stand the first day and a half. So nervous, so angry and in so much pain. He just sat there the whole time, expressionless, taking notes. He never went on the stand. Chris received a minor punishment of twenty six years in prison. Such a short time for a crime that made a mother lose her child for a lifetime. Although I firmly disagree with the sentence, I know someday he will answer for his crime. When God places judgment on his head, only then will I have my satisfaction. I live my life everyday with out Amber. It grows harder as time goes by. I see parents who mistreat their children and who do not deserve to be parents all together. Then there I am, I would give anything to spend just one more day with her. I know that Amber is shining down on me, even now as I write this. That is what gives me the strength to share my story. I know I will see her again someday. They say that God takes his favorites home when they are young and that they sometimes need a breath of youth to grace Heaven. I know that is true, because my daughter is up there now. Someday I will see her, but for now I have to be satisfied with memories of her ruddy cheeks, her curly strawberry blonde hair, the most beautiful eyes you have ever seen, and the sweet little way she said, "Bye-ya". I hate to hear stories in the news of little innocent children who are killed by their parent or guardian. It saddens me that not much is done to these "people". Most of the time they are let off with barely a slap on the wrist. It makes me wonder what is wrong with this world. Then I remember that this world is not of God. That is why God takes those loved ones from us. It is to protect them from the evil of this world. Until I see Amber again, all I can do is love her, keep her memory alive and pray that all this killing of our innocent children comes to an end. My hope is that I will save at least one life. Whether it be an abused child, woman or man. If you are being abused or know someone who is, please get out or help them. I am here along with my parents if someone needs to talk. God Bless everyone!!!!!!!! Thank you for visiting my site. And please help me in stopping abuse.

Love and Many Hugs Heather

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Sandra Kucks Gallery

Tears In Heaven
by' Eric Clapton'

  Made With Love