Domestic violence is a real and persistent problem in the U.S. and around the world. On average, four to five people are murdered by their intimate partners each day in America. Several hundred people are raped or sexually assaulted daily. Domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking (“the four crimes”) affect more than just the victims of these abuses. They fill emergency rooms and morgues, keep employees from being able to work, terrorize children, and interfere with their ability to learn. They drive up health care costs, contribute to crime on our streets, and cause lasting harm to families and communities.
I will never forget September 11, 2001. My husband Zack and I had moved to Rocklin, CA the April prior. He had just completed his training for the U-2 program at Beale AFB. That morning we were both up early and getting ready for work. I was upstairs and he was downstairs. We don’t usually have the TV on, but he happened to have it on that morning to catch the news. Then he called out to me. I came across the upstairs loft overlooking the living room area. He stood in his flight suit with his back to me watching the TV screen. I watched over his shoulder as the second airplane struck. We both stood frozen, not quite knowing what we were seeing. And then a moment later, he turned, looked at me and said “I might not be home tonight.”