Daleen v. Goliath

You look at an author like me, with seven published books, and you think I must be rich. If only. For 15 months of work on “Pretty Little Killers,” I made just $12,500. I earn so little from royalties on all my books combined that, if I applied, I would be eligible for welfare.

You look at my experience as an investigative crime reporter, and you think I must be powerful. You know I have helped others fight their battles—abusive boyfriends, custody cases, murdered loved ones. Now I’m the one in the fight.

There’s much I can’t say about why I now ask for your help. What I can say is this: I’ve been a widow barely a year, and I spent much of 207 looking for my missing daughter. Now I’ve been named as a third-party defendant in litigation about my husband Butch’s estate. I need help, and every lawyer who can provide that help needs a retainer. A big retainer. I need to raise $20,000 to hire a lawyer for a case I’m confident I will win—but not on my own.

I lost Butch Culp after 15 years of marriage. He didn’t have life insurance, but he left a company he built with his first wife, Shirley. She was my dear friend, and she died after a 10-year battle with breast cancer. I knew she would approve if I married Butch and took care of him, and I did that.  He nearly died so many times. The first time was in 2007 of congestive heart failure that required a bypass surgery. In 2009, he underwent a quadruple bypass. In 2014, a broken leg turned into a nearly fatal bone infection. A year later, Butch nearly died of a diabetic emergency. Every time, I nursed him back to health. But on April 17, 2017, no one could save him. Now I’m trying to save his company and our home.

When you’re an independent author, income is intermittent. You have to spend a lot of time promoting your work. Between grieving for Butch and searching for my daughter, missing since the Ghost Ship fire, I haven’t been able to promote my work. Now, my time is devoted to finding an attorney and ensuring that this time, justice will prevail for ME.

Writing is cathartic and helps me make sense of this crazy, messed-up world we live in. Your support will help ensure that someday soon, I can get back to that—back to fighting for others instead of myself. If you can help, I will be forever grateful.

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Daleen Berry 
Morgantown, WV
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