Saturday, September 23, 2006


The following letter was sent to TMC NEWS by the family of Shelia Pierce. We are posting it unedited and in its entirety. We hope you take a moment to read it.

Sheila was taken from us on Sept. 16, 2006. She was laid to rest on Sept. 20, 2006. Her last wishes were honored. We were fortunate enough to be able to lay her to rest knowing that the man that did this to her was in jail. While that does not make anything any better, or bring her back to us, it gave us a little bit of peace knowing at least that much had gone our way.

Shelia was loved very much & will be missed dearly. She was a thoughtful, caring woman who would give you anything she had if you needed it or help in anyway that she could. She was out on the road late that night because she had been with her sister who was taken to Lorain Community’s emergency room. She left once her sister had been admitted to the hospital. She had been where she felt she needed to be. Unfortunately, there was a drunken man out on the road at the same time, driving, and not where he needed to be. He took her from us - no chance to say the things you never said, no chance to tell her you loved her one more time, no chance to hear her laughter again - no chance for anything other than to grieve and try to wrap your mind around what happened, how it happened, and why. We take peace in knowing that she did not suffer. We try & hold on to the little things that we can. We try & burn our last memories in to our brains, so that they will never fade. The sad part is that it is clouded by one man's inability to use good judgment or to learn from his past. Followed by the memories of shrieks of woman, the cries of grown men, the questions from the children who don't understand why she can't wake up, the pain in every person's eyes and the reality that there will never be another visit, email, phone call, hug, smile...that she is gone forever.

We have remained silent, publicly, trying to come to grips with our loss. There have been many tears shed, many stories told and many cards & phone calls of sympathy. We appreciate all of it and it is a reminder to us of how much Shelia meant to not only us, her family, but to all of her friends and how many strangers have taken the time to care & grieve with us. When anyone loses someone they love, it is very difficult. With Shelia’s death being so public, it has both helped & hurt. You feel as though you are not given the ability to choose the time in which you need, for yourself, to grieve and go through the motions. You feel as though a timeline has been set for you. At the same time, it allows you to realize that the world is still full of many caring people.

We were given the opportunity to view the video prior to it being released publicly. It was very difficult for us to see the moment that she was no longer with us. But we were grateful that the Amherst Police Department gave us the opportunity to see it ahead of time so we could try and prepare ourselves for what may lie ahead.

We hope that Mr. Stern is punished to the fullest extent of the law and that now that he's sober, that he understands what he has robbed us of. We hope that no one forgets what happened and we hope the next time that someone decides that they are going to drink & drive that they stop and remember what happened early Saturday morning, Sept. 16, 2006, to our mother, grandmother, wife, sister, aunt, and friend.


Allen Jr., Stacey & the rest of the Pierce Family


Anonymous Helen from Lorain said...

God Bless your family. you have far more strength then i think i would in a situation that you are in. i would be calling that drunk an awful lot of names but you have taken the high road.

i hope all the best for your family. and i think you know what i hope for the drunk.

4:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Classy family!

6:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Today is one year from the day that Sheila was killed...we still miss her and we still rememeber it as if it were today...still waiting for Mr. Stern to receive his punishment although he has been in jail all this time, still waiting to finally be able to just have it all behind us so that we may grieve with out having to go through court proceedings & such...We hope that someone has learned from the tragedy that night & that it has prevented someone else from losing their life...

11:02 AM  

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