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Sunday, March 31, 2019


by George Held

The following statement by Jeremy Richman’s widow, Jennifer Hensel, was posted at the GoFundMe page created by Jennifer’s brother. It is the only authorized fundraising site for fundraising for Jennifer and her children. “Side by side since 1991, Jeremy and I walked a path of deep friendship, marriage, and parenthood. As you may know, our first born, our beautiful Avielle was murdered at Sandy Hook school in 2012. In 2013, we founded the Avielle Foundation to honor her life. Our second daughter, Imogen (4 years) and son Owen (2 years) brought a renewed sense of joy and hope to our lives. Imogen and Owen are imaginative, fun, caring, sweet, curious and RIDICULOUSLY loving. They are a true reflection of Jeremy and me. The work of the Avielle Foundation is meaningful. But my champion and the love of my life is the person who had every tool in the toolbox at his disposal. He succumbed to the grief that he could not escape. Now we also honor Jeremy through the continued work of our foundation. Our family is our true legacy. To parent our children without my champion shatters my heart and I will love my best friend forever.  I am grateful for your support and donations.”

You’ve lost your daughter,
Now your husband,
To the dark reaper
Who sowed death
Among the kids and staff
At Sandy Hook,
Sure as if he’d pulled
The trigger on Jeremy.

Who knew that more years
Would pass than Avielle’s age
Before Jeremy himself
Would pass on from
The hopelessness here
To wherever—we can
Never know—but life
Without Avielle,

In an uncaring nation
Of gun Nazis
Allowing no progress
On gun laws,
Was just too hard
To bear? And we now
Pray for you, Avielle’s mom
And Jeremy’s widow,

We pray for you.

George Held, a frequent contributor to TheNewVerse.News and other periodicals, has received ten Pushcart Prize nominations and published or edited twenty-two poetry books.