A Tale Of Three Tragedies …

This is the story I should not be writing.  This is the story that never should have even happened.  This is the story that seems to happen more and more, and frankly is inexcusable.  Three separate headlines:

2 Texas Toddlers Died After Being Left In Car Overnight, Sheriff Says

7-Month-Old Dead After Left In Hot Car Outside NW Houston Business

Texas Mother Held After Two Toddlers Die In Hot Car

All three stories are eerily similar, involving the senseless death of innocent, helpless young children, careless or cruel parents, and they all took place in Texas.  This is the best argument I have seen yet for free and readily available birth control, and even abortion would be less cruel than the agonizing death these children suffered.

The first story took place on June 7th.  The children’s mother, Amanda Hawkins, was inside a friend’s house at a party and left the children, Addyson Overgard-Eddy, 2, and Brynn Hawkins, 1, inside the car for 15 hours, from the evening of Tuesday, June 6, to about noon on Wednesday, June 7. During the night of partying, friends told Hawkins they could hear the girls crying, and told Hawkins to bring her daughters inside, but she refused. “No it’s fine. They’ll cry themselves to sleep,” she said. When she discovered the girls and realized they were dead, she attempted to bathe them before finally taking them to the hospital.  At the hospital, she told doctors that she had been out walking with the girls and they had collapsed after “smelling flowers”. Eventually the true story came out. Amanda and her husband Isaac Hawkins were investigated by Child Protective Services last year, and investigators say it was not the first time she had left the children in her SUV.

Amanda Hawkins

The second story took place just last Friday, June 23rd. The baby’s father, whose name has not yet been released by police, was to take his three children to daycare and the babysitter on his way to work.  He dropped off the two older children at their daycare facility, but forgot to take the baby to the sitter. He arrived at his workplace around 9:30 a.m., and it was approximately 10 hours later when his wife called to ask where the baby was.  The baby, of course, was in the car … dead.

And the final story took place on May 26th when Cynthia Marie Randolph found her two small children playing in the car and decided to “teach them a lesson” by locking them both in the car.  Then she proceeded to go into the house, smoke some marijuana, and take a 2-3 hour nap.  When she returned to the car later that afternoon, the children, Juliet, age 2, and Cavanaugh, age 16-months, were both dead.  She broke a window after finding the children, trying to make it look as if it had been an accident.

Cynthia Marie Randolph

In my research for these three, I also came across three other similar cases just this year, but the above are enough to make my point.  A few facts …

  • Each year, approximately 40 children die in the U.S. from heat stroke after being trapped in a car.
  • Most children who have died from a heat stroke after being alone in a car are 3 years of age and under, but it has happened to even older kids.
  • The temperature inside a car can increase by 20 degrees in just 10 minutes. It doesn’t have to be hot outside to be really dangerous inside the car.
  • A child’s body heats up to 3-5 times faster than an adult’s body and has not yet developed the same ability to cool down well.

More than a few times we have heard of parents ‘forgetting’ their child in the car when they go to work.  The organization Kids and Cars advises parents to always look in the backseat of their vehicle before locking it. They should also put something in the backseat they’ll need such as their cell phone, employee ID or briefcase.

But the first and third story are the worst … these are ‘parents’ who never should have become parents, who have not enough common sense to be responsible for the life of a pet goldfish, let alone a child.  These are cruel young women who put their own pleasure before the lives of their children.  In years past, most incidences of children dying in hot cars stemmed from neglect and carelessness.  That in itself is bad enough, but lately the stories of cruelty seem to be on the rise.  This makes a statement, I think.  It says that society is becoming, as we are already aware, more of a ‘me-centric’ society, one where one’s own desires take precedence over all else.  Even the lives of innocent children, apparently.

It is my hope that at the very least, the two young women who intentionally left their children in a hot car while pursuing their own pleasure serve very long prison sentences.  It is my hope that organizations like the AMA, CDC, and Kids and Cars keep this issue in the forefront of everyone’s attention.  And it is my hope that people read about these atrocities and are so horrified that they become more conscientious, more aware, and that these tragedies never happen again.

sad

43 thoughts on “A Tale Of Three Tragedies …

  1. How horrible. It makes me heartsick. It’s almost as if some people are born without a conscience. What went through the minds of the people at the party? Why didn’t one of them go and get the children out? Were they drunk, high on something or just plain either stupid or hardhearted like their friend the mother of the children? 😦 — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hard to say, my friend. I cannot imagine. As for the party, I suspect that at the very least, alcohol was involved, and one report said the mother was hand-in-hand with a 16 year old boy when the police arrived. Such an unnecessary tragedy … I hope they put her in a cell for a very long time.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Y’know, at various points I have thought compulsory sterilization for some might be a good idea. But then, I remember how things are done, and I suspect it would be a short time before all African-Americans would be subject to it, or all Muslims, Jews, Latinos … so, I guess it’s not such a great idea. HOWEVER … free or cheap access to birth control and family planning … along the lines of what the much-maligned organization Planned Parenthood offers … might cut down on people having children they don’t need, deserve, or want. And even, worse case scenario, an abortion if a woman is smart enough to realize that she cannot or will not care for a child. But no … wait … that makes too much sense and goes against the values of the alt-right and those who call themselves “Christians”. Sigh … I guess we just let people go on reproducing and then killing their kids, eh?

      Liked by 1 person

      • This is really an evening (UK time) for me to be saying ” Roger, keep your hard-line socialist state inclined mouth under control. It upsets fluffy-bunny socialists”
        And you make a good point there Jill, that’s how the Alt Right would work it-while they carry on producing morons.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Personally, I like your ‘hard-line socialist state inclined mouth’ … so don’t hold back … let ‘er rip!!! And what the heck is a ‘fluffy-bunny’ socialist??? 😀 😀 😀 I am alternating between mind pics of the Easter Bunny and good ol’ “what’s up Doc?” Bugs Bunny! I like Bugs an awful lot, and I think he would be fair, but then … the Easter Bunny does give out all those lovely eggs … not to mention … CHOCOLATE! 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

          • Oh Fluffy-Bunny socialists are ones who rant and rave about capitalism and how it should be pulled down, but how no one except rich capitalists should be put in prison and everyone should be free to do as they like. It’s my term for those who don’t live in the harsh real world and think once they are in power all will be sunshine and lollipops!
            Not so much Bugs Bunny as the Elmer Fudd wing of political ‘reality.’

            Like

  2. I put a ‘like’ on this story because it is informative and timely. But there is little to ‘like’ about people who are so selfish and cruel to their own offspring. It is indicative of a deviant society. I honestly believe that people who harm their own children should be sterilized as part of their sentence. They are not fit parents so should be denied that right (to be a parent) upon conviction. While this doesn’t sound very ‘loving’ or prepared to look at the background of the perpetrators of such crimes (they themselves are often the victims of the same abuse), it will help to break the cycle of abuse. So, such measures should also be combined with counselling.

    As for leaving children and pets in cars…. It is time for laws against it… Currently, there are only advisories. Even with a window cracked open, a car heats up so quickly in the sun… No place for your loved one!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree on all counts. As I said to Roger earlier, I have often considered the case for mandatory sterilization in certain circumstances, BUT … I can see how easily it could and would be abused, and I think it would be only a matter of time before it would be used against minorities, LGBT, and almost anybody who did not fit the WASP profile. But in these cases, yeah … I could support it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m so sorry to hear that about your childhood. 😥 I am in agreement with you and Gronda. In fact, if it were very hot, I would not hesitate to do as some have done and break a window before the police arrived. That said, I gave a mother who was hitting her child in the grocery store a tongue lashing one time and threatened to report her. Then a few days later somebody advised me against that, saying that the mother would just take her anger at me out on her child. Sometimes it’s tough to know just what to do, but the child in a car … oh yes, I would call 911 immediately!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Thanks Jill. I know what you mean about not knowing what to do in certain situations. There were some that popped up when I was still working as a children’s librarian, that gave me pause. Over the years I learned to go with my gut. If I saw something obvious, like a parent slapping their child across the face, I immediately reported it to our director. What was harder was the child who came to storyhour with fingerprint bruising around her arm, or one who jumped at the slightest noise. My mother was a social worker, so there’s an example of a parent who knew exactly where to hit where no one would see the bruises. Her favorite thing was dragging me by the hair. Lots of pain, but no physical signs. Sorry. I digress. With things like children in locked cars, you know exactly what to do.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Dear Jill,
    This is so painful and hard to read but it is information that needs to be shared. All I know, is that I better not see any children in a car without their parents. I am calling the police. As others take action, folks may stop doing this.
    Hugs, Gronda

    Liked by 4 people

    • Yes, after I wrote this, I held back on posting it while I debated if it was just too sad. But, I think it’s important to know about these things. And I am with you, I would call 911 immediately … and break a window if I felt the child were in imminent danger.
      Many hugs!!!!

      Liked by 2 people

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