Friday, August 9, 2013

Former post from time of trial in 2010......."The trial is upon us.....finally....."

I am afraid to exhale for fear the date will change again....but I am assured it is going forward on Sept 7th...just 6 days before the 3rd anniversary of Laura's death.  It seems like yesterday in some ways....and a life time ago in others.  It feels like I am going to a funeral of sorts instead of a trial....a long, slow funeral.  I pray I can sit thru this by the grace of God!  There will be things I won't want to hear....things I hope to hear and don't....  The only time I will be talking at the trial is at the sentencing, giving an impact statement.

I am writing this quick blog so you can link up before the trial.  It is my hope and desire that  I will be blogging every night in order  to keep all my friends and family across the country updated on what is transpiring.  Feel free to quote me and re-post my reporting.   I spoke with the Cape Cod Times and they said they will be covering the trial also every day.  That doesn't mean it will be in the paper every day.

I have been very pleased so far with the DA, Michael O'Keefe's handling of the case and also Brian Glenny's, his assistant.  The Victim Witness advocate from the same court has been wonderful every step of the way.  She has been with me every step of the way for 3 years, calling me every time there was a pre-trial hearing or conference.  Informing me of the process but most of all just holding my hand thru the phone.  I don't mention her name for her sake but would love to give her public praise.

I look forward to being on the other side of this trial.  Life will never be the same without Laura but we will find some comfort in getting justice for Laura.

Little Laura's Reaction

As I mentioned in the last blog, I was worried how Laura would react to being given away to me, a total stranger to her.  I was totally leaning on the Lord for this path I have never walked before.  I asked the parents to just take a break from her.  Let me take Laura for a vacation time.  Rethink what they wanted to do.  It was so final and so traumatizing to Laura, I anticipated.  No, they said.  It has to be done this way.  Permanence is what they wanted.  There was no reasoning with them.  They might change their minds I said and Laura would be put thru all this separation for no reason.  No, they were adamant.

Upon entering  the house, I gently spoke to Laura, complimenting her,  trying to sooth her from the fate that  I knew was coming, coaxing her onto my lap, rubbing her back,  stroking  her long mane of thick black curly hair.  Such a precious child.  I already didn't understand how the parents could do what they were doing to Laura.

Then came the big question from her mom "Do you want to go live with Eileen, Laura?"  I will never forget, Laura looking up with her big beautiful brown eyes that were smiling at me.  As she stared into my eyes, her bright eyes sparkling, she shook her head up and down, "yes, I do".  ....

My God, would it be this easy?  How bad it must be for her living here to so readily jump at the chance to leave with me, an unknown person in her life  permanently!  Or maybe God let her know then and there in her heart that I would love her unconditionally, that she would be safe and protected ...body, soul and spirit.   

Four year old Laura left with me that day skipping and smiling, carrying her favorite toy, a huge stuffed yellow duck that was almost as big as she was.  Included along with the duck and her bike, was one brown shopping bag of clothing.  Although these people were affluent, you would have thought Laura a poor child based on what she left with.  Laura was too young to understand and I was to concerned about Laura to care.  I would take care of all  her needs now....

An air of excitement filled the car as we drove home those 6 hours.  I was going to adopt Laura.  They even gave me the name of the adoption agency they used to help me with my adoption.  I never called them.

Two weeks after we arrived home the call came from the parents.  "We changed our mind, we want Laura back!"  To be cont'd.

Next blog: "You Give & Take Away!"

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Phone Call

 Laura Hope was taken out of our life with a phone call on September 13th, 2007.  The dreaded phone call no parent wants to get.  I wanted to believe it was a wrong number, a mistake or a prank!  The caller ID  showing Laura's phone number disallowed all wanted explanations.  The friend, who was the last friend to see her alive, was using Laura's phone to connect us with the ER Dr. who made the pronouncement that took the breath out of me, "She's gone, Mrs Smith".

There was another phone call I got  18 yrs previous to this one.  "There is a little girl who needs a home.  She is being abused, physically and emotionally.  I wish I could take her" said my friend, "but I am in the middle of an adoption myself".  "The adoptive parents are giving her back to DSS because they don't want her any more".  Laura was 4 yrs old when I got this phone call.  Although I never met Laura, I knew the family from a former church (yes, Christians) I attended.  They were odd, but I never thought them capable of what I was hearing, abusing a child?  They had adopted 4 children first and then had 2 natural children.  Surely, this was a family that loved and wanted children!   

My heart went out to this child.  Already having 2 sets of parents by age 4 and they, wanting to pass her on again.  Like a piece of used furniture that doesn't go with the decor anymore....put it on the curb!  Next please!

Of course I would take her!  I can't let this happen to an innocent child that I never knew.  Yes, I would drive down to her city 6 hrs south of me and bring her home.  On arriving at the home, Laura's mother let me in.
The home was emptied of occupants for the occasion.  Father and 3 siblings were taken out to lunch to avoid the giving away of their beloved sister! They weren't told of Laura's departure until they returned to their slightly quieter home. They got no chance to say good-bye.  More on the consequences of this action to the family later.  They were grievous!

My heart was broken for this little girl.  It wasn't till I arrived in her home that I wondered how she would react when I took her away.  Would she cling to her mother's legs, as I imagined my own children doing, should anyone try to take them from me.  Would she scream and cry!!??   I wouldn't have to wait long....I was truly shocked at Laura's reaction.

to be continued....

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Laura died on the wrong side of Kennedy's Politics

 I raised my family on Cape Cod near the medical Mecca of the world (Boston) with a false sense of security. Surely all our medical needs would be taken care of with the latest of technologies and the best of the best of doctors. Never in my worst nightmare could I have imagined my daughter would die at the hands of a Harvard Fellow practicing worse than 3rd world medicine.

My daughter, Laura Hope Smith, died in a doctor's office in Hyannis, MA on September 13th, 2007 just blocks from the well known Kennedy Compound.  Laura died from the same drug, Propofol, that killed Michael Jackson, and for the same reasons: carelessness, criminal negligence and recklessness. 

A few months after my daughter’s death, I knew I had to contact Senator Kennedy, the head of the US Senate Health Committee and champion of health care. Surely he would want to know what was happening in his own back yard in Hyannis. I had visions of him personally closing down the office in righteous indignation. I had not followed Kennedy’s political career and did not know he left his Catholic moorings of respect for Life.  Unaware of Life politics at the time, I thought all Catholics were for Life. It was a given. After all, the Pope was watching!

I made a personal visit to the Senator’s Washington DC office and met with one of his aides. We spoke for almost an hour; she was polite, listened and took notes. She assured me I would hear  from her or someone else. One month went by. I called her, reminded her who I was and refreshed her on my story. Again I was assured I would hear something. I never did. Never got a call back. Never an ounce of concern came from Senator Ted Kennedy or his office regarding my daughter, whose life was carelessly snuffed short by the Harvard Fellow. To this day I cannot dignify him with the title of doctor. I refer to him by his first name, Rapin. Ironic isn’t it? Rapin? I feel my daughter’s life was raped from her along with my grandchild’s.

The "Lion of the Senate", the champion of the "little people" and the overseer of health care in America was noticeably absent in the aftermath Laura's death and the resulting criminal charges against the abortionist. No, the lion didn't roar.  Also absent were all the organizations that are for "safe and legal" abortions.   

I can't help but wonder if things would have been different if Michael Jackson had died within minutes of the Kennedy Compound.  I also can't help but wonder if the Harvard Fellow - who subsequently lost his license to practice medicine - had killed Michael Jackson, would he still be employeed by Harvard.

I am sure that Senator Kennedy  had the best of care by the highest caliber of doctors during his terminal illness.  At least his family knew his end was near and could say goodbye. Laura and I never had that chance.