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Cape Fear Voices/The Teen Scene

Cape Fear Voices/The Teen Scene

Year Anniversary of Gabby Petito

Jennna Williams, West Brunswick High School

On July 2nd, 2021 Gabrielle Petito and her fiance Brian Laundrie started their 4-month long cross-country trip. They had planned to stop at most of the national parks so that they could camp while they were traveling and also vlog it on Gabby’s youtube channel along the way. Gabby was completely oblivious as to what was about to change in not only her life, but everyone else’ life around her.

On September 19th, 22-year-old Gabby was reported dead after they found her body near Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, just a 5-minute walk from where the van that she and Brian were driving was found. Petito’s mother, Nicole Schmidt, claimed that she got a text from her on August 25th that she said was out of character for her daughter and wasn’t something that she would say. Then on the 27th, she made her last social media post which was taken at Grand Teton National Park. Gabby was then reported missing once her fiance returned home without her.

When Brian Laundrie returned home, where he and Gabby used to live, he then disappeared only two days before Gabby’s body was found. They found his body at Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park, and they ruled the cause of death as a self-inflicted gunshot wound. When they found his body, there was a notebook laying beside him which was taken into evidence processing. In the notebook, they found a confession letter that stated that his fiance’s death was a mercy killing because she had a head injury in a fall and he thought that killing her would be merciful because she was in pain. According to an article from WWSB, the local news of Sarasota, Flordia, Laundrie stated that he was sorry and didn’t want to make life harder for his family.

“Please do not make life harder for my family,” Brian Laundrie wrote. “They lost a son and a daughter. The most wonderful girl in the world. Gabby, I’m sorry.”

Brian Laundrie’s parents knew that he killed Gabby before anyone, but they kept it to themselves and helped covered his tracks, and that his return back home without her, was so that he could spend the little time he had left, with his family. Brian revealed in his notebook that he was the one who killed Gabby because he thought that is what she wanted after she supposedly fell and hurt herself. Brian strangled her to ‘’put her out of her misery’’, and from the results of the autopsy, they claimed that she died 3-4 weeks before her body was found at a national park in Wyoming.

Gabby was reported missing on September 11th, and whether you heard about it on Tiktok, Facebook, or Instagram we all found out one way or another because it made national news in a matter of days. Some people got more into it than others, many people picking sides and som claiming that Brian was completely innocent and had nothing to do with it, while others were saying that he was guilty, others believed there was someone else involved that we didn’t know about.

This case affected women in many ways by allowing them to realize that they may not be in the best relationship. It made us realize that we need to pay closer attention to these warning signs and make ourselves more aware of how events could change. From this case, people can mainly all conclude that Gabby was in an abusive relationship with Brian, and no one knew until it was too late. I think that everyone, men and women, should know that these things can happen so easily to anyone.

On September 25th the family made an organization to help others because no one should have to find their child alone as Peitito’s parents did. This organization is to help give other parents, who may be or have been in the same situation, some resources, guidance, and support. If you or anyone know someone who may be in an abusive relationship, help them. Let them know there is help and that they can get out of it. Call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), if you or anyone else needs help.

 

 

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    Daniel G. NeizmikOct 28, 2022 at 3:19 pm

    Jenna,
    This is very impressive. Well research and well written. This is an example of good journalism… Absolutely!

    Dan Neizmik

    Reply