Hana Alemu: We Will Not Forget

I wrote this post last November:

Owning humans is alive and well – It’s Hana who’s dead

If you do not know Hana’s story, please read that first.

Today, Dawn Betancourt, who was there for the Williams’ trial and visits Hana’s gravesite regularly, posted this to the Remembrance of Hanna Williams group on Facebook:

The lily stems cover a little of the writing, but the year of birth is clearly visible. They really did it. They changed Hana’s age on the gravestone, so it would appear she was sixteen instead of thirteen when she died. Why? Because legally, it’s slightly less abhorrent to slowly torture and starve a sixteen-year-old who is at your mercy than a thirteen-year-old. At least in the state of Washington. In other words, Mr and Mrs Williams have not given up on getting away with murder.

If that is not enough, they flaunt their power over her even now. The inscription reads: “Our daughter, our sister, our beloved” and then the name they grafted onto hers: “Hana Grace-Rose Williams”. The egregious and blatantly incorrect birth date, and finally, the real piss: “We love you, Hana, forever and always.”

Tell me, Mrs Williams, did you love Hana when you shaved the beautiful hair from her head as punishment for not doing her chores to your liking? How about when you locked her in a closet and forced her to listen to “Christian” tapes? Or when you instructed your biological sons to beat her with plastic pipes? Or made her sleep in the barn? Or hosed her down with cold water outside instead of letting her use the bathroom? Or as you and the rest of your family ate in front of her but allowed her only half-thawed vegetables? Or nothing? Or when she took the beating for her younger, even more helpless brother?

And the day she finally died, and you watched from the comfort of your house, did you feel love for her as she struggled to stand–naked, freezing, and starved–in the cold mud in your backyard? Was the love just oozing from you then, when you called 911 to say you think your daughter just killed herself?

Killed herself?

And the whole thing was such an inconvenience for you. Having to call 911 and all. It probably disrupted your whole day.

And Mr Williams, where were you? This happily married, good Christian couple–it didn’t take long for you to turn on each other, did it? Like desperate animals in a cage. So where were you? Are you going to tell me you were busy supporting your family and never noticed that Hana was slowly dying before your eyes? Didn’t it seem strange to you that, if she actually had an intestinal disorder (which she didn’t) that she would have lost 30 pounds after coming to live with you here in White America? If she was so destitute in Ethiopia, how would that even be possible? With your great health care benefits from Boeing, and Carri being such an attentive and experienced mother? Please, tell me. I really want to know.

You let her die, you filthy coward. You let your sick bitch of a wife slowly kill her and you did nothing.

The headstone isn’t surprising, really. I knew you’d try. There is obviously nothing too low for either of you. I just hoped there would be such a public outcry that you wouldn’t get away with it. But don’t worry. You still own Hana, the part of her here on earth. The part of her that matters–her soul–is in a place you cannot touch.

I would just love to see you justify this to the God you claim to believe in.

Elle Cuardaigh is author of The Tangled Red Thread and contributor to The Adoptee Survival Guide

Email: ellecuardaigh@gmail.com

Twitter: @ElleCuardaigh

3 thoughts on “Hana Alemu: We Will Not Forget

  1. Reblogged this on elle cuardaigh and commented:

    Today Larry and Carri Williams begin appealing their murder convictions, based on their allegation that Hana was 16 and not 13 when she finally died from their abuse. Please keep Hana in your thoughts today. #JusticeForHana

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