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12-Year-Old Girl Dies by Suicide After Being Relentlessly Bullied and Harassed at School

After facing relentless bullying and harassment over the past school year, 12-year-old Flora Martinez ended her life on May 7. Now, her parents are demanding change from schools and administrators after the bullying persisted, even once she was gone.

One Year After 26-Year-Old Wife Dies of Cancer, Husband Finds Redeeming Love After Loss With Young Widow

After his wife Maddy died of cancer at just 26 years old, Chandler David Smith was left grieving an unimaginable loss and navigating what it looked like to be a single dad. In his grief, he found new and beautiful love with a young widow and mother of three.

Florida ‘Safe Haven’ Baby Graduates High School, Reunites With Firefighters Who Received Her 18 Years Ago

Eighteen years ago, when she was just one day old, a baby named Colleen was surrendered at a “Safe Haven” box in Clermont, Florida. Now, as she successfully graduates high school, Colleen is reuniting with the firefighters who were with her on that fateful day 18 years ago.

Beauty for Ashes: How Terry Gobanga Crawled Out of Darkness After Tragedy

It isn’t often that you hear of a bride not showing up for her own wedding. Sure—on television it’s like the most overused cliff-hanger in the history of cable TV. But in real life, happy endings and “I do’s” are far more typical than a missing bride.

So when Terry Gobanga—then Terry Apudo—didn’t show up for her wedding in Nairobi, Kenya, it shocked everyone. But nobody could have imagined what had actually happened to her—that she had been abducted, gang-raped and left for dead on the side of the road.

Today, by the grace of God, Terry is alive and able to tell her story.

A pastor at a church, Terry’s wedding to her fiancé, Harry, was going to be a big one. There were plenty of family and church members ready to witness the beautiful union, and Terry couldn’t have been more excited to wear her wedding dress.

But the night before her wedding, Terry realized she had some things that Harry would need for the big day—some clothes and his necktie.

She arranged to have a girlfriend bring them to him in the morning. The two women walked together to the bus station, where Terry left her friend with Harry’s clothes.

As she walked home to prepare for the most exciting day of her life, Terry passed a man sitting on the hood of his car. He quickly grabbed her from behind, and shoved her into the backseat with two other men inside. Within seconds, they sped off.

“A piece of cloth was stuffed in my mouth. I was kicking and hitting out and trying to scream. When I managed to push the gag out, I screamed: ‘It’s my wedding day!’ That was when I got the first blow. One of the men told me to ‘cooperate or you will die.’”

After speeding off, each of the men took turns raping her.

“I felt sure I was going to die,” Terry says.

She fought for her life, biting the men where she could, and being beaten in return. Six hours after she’d been abducted, she was tossed from the car and left for dead.

“A child saw me being thrown out and called her grandmother. People came running. When the police came they tried to get a pulse, but no-one could. Thinking I was dead, they wrapped me in a blanket and started to take me to the mortuary.”

But on the way there, Terry came to. She choked on the blanket that was covering her and coughed. Shocked at the fact that she was alive, police rushed her to “the biggest government hospital in Kenya.”

Terry Gobanga

Upon arriving to the hospital, Terry was incoherent and shaking in shock.

“I was half-naked and covered in blood, and my face was swollen from being punched.”

But something led one of the nurses to believe the young woman was a bride. They decided to call around to the nearby churches to see if they were missing a bride. To their surprise, the first one they called was All Saints Cathedral in Nairobi—the church where Terry was supposed to marry Harry at 10 a.m.

Once her family was contacted, they rushed to the hospital—Harry with her wedding dress in hand, grateful to have found his missing bride.

Doctors tended to Terry’s wounds—one that went so deep into her womb, she was told she’d never be able to carry children.

Beyond the devastating news, and the shock of the day’s events, Terry was given the morning-after pill and drugs to protect her from HIV and Aids.

“My mind shut down, it refused to accept what had happened.”

She continues:

“Harry kept saying he still wanted to marry me. ‘I want to take care of her and make sure she comes back to good health in my arms, in our house,’ he said. Truth be told, I wasn’t in a position to say Yes or No because my mind was so jammed with the faces of the three men, and with everything that had happened.”

In the weeks and months that followed, Terry was blamed by many for what had happened to her. The victim of unthinkable brutality—criticized for her decision to leave the house. But Harry and her family stood by her, and the two began planning their wedding for the second time.

Three months after the attack, Terry was told she had tested negative for HIV—meaning she was moving forward in healing from the incident.

In July 2005—seven months after the day of her attack and their first wedding, Terry and Harry finally married and went on a honeymoon.

Terry Gobanga

Just 29 days later, the unthinkable happened.

After eating dinner one night, Harry lit a charcoal burner and brought it into the bedroom. Before going to sleep, he removed it because the room had warmed up. But just before climbing into bed, Harry said he was feeling dizzy, and both husband and wife were having trouble sleeping from being so cold.

Bri Lamm
Bri Lamm
Bri is an outgoing introvert with a heart that beats for adventure. She lives to serve the Lord, experience the world, and eat macaroni and cheese in between capturing life’s greatest moments on one of her favorite cameras.

12-Year-Old Girl Dies by Suicide After Being Relentlessly Bullied and Harassed at School

After facing relentless bullying and harassment over the past school year, 12-year-old Flora Martinez ended her life on May 7. Now, her parents are demanding change from schools and administrators after the bullying persisted, even once she was gone.

One Year After 26-Year-Old Wife Dies of Cancer, Husband Finds Redeeming Love After Loss With Young Widow

After his wife Maddy died of cancer at just 26 years old, Chandler David Smith was left grieving an unimaginable loss and navigating what it looked like to be a single dad. In his grief, he found new and beautiful love with a young widow and mother of three.

Florida ‘Safe Haven’ Baby Graduates High School, Reunites With Firefighters Who Received Her 18 Years Ago

Eighteen years ago, when she was just one day old, a baby named Colleen was surrendered at a “Safe Haven” box in Clermont, Florida. Now, as she successfully graduates high school, Colleen is reuniting with the firefighters who were with her on that fateful day 18 years ago.