Raising money to fight a hate crime



October 12, after a year of looking for our dream home, and saving the money for a down deposit, we finally found it!  We closed on our dream house! That day my family’s world was changed forever.
While we were taking the traditional family photo in front of the ‘sold’ sign, all smiles, so excited, we didn’t know what was going on behind the scenes. We didn’t know, we were being watched, and plotted against. Our world was about to change.

The kids got to pick out the colors for their room, we were buying items we would need, everyone was making big plans, and talking about memories we hoped to make in the future in our new dream home. We had finally found the perfect home for our family! We all walked in the front door that day, ready to start this new adventure; however, I didn’t know my son was being watched and targeted as I sent him out to help bring things in. I didn’t know what was getting ready to come.

We left that night around 7. Completely exhausted. We went back to the rental for the night and I got the kids ready for bed. We all finally fell asleep around 11:30 that night.
Around midnight, my husband, who was working late that night, got off work and had to stop by the new house to turn the furnace back on since I forgot. The outside lights were on, so it’s well lit.

At first the toilet paper didn’t show up that well. The closer my husband got, the more he saw. Not only the toilet paper in the bushes and tree, but the note folded and tucked in the front door.
The toilet paper, that was a warning. The note, that was the threat. An ENTIRE typed out (not signed) letter. A letter about my son who had been watched and plotted against. My bi-racial son. My CHILD was facing bigotry and hatred at a level I can’t even fathom. JUST FOR THE COLOR OF HIS SKIN!!!
I have blacked out the worst word, but you can still see.
This is the first part of the letter.
There’s no need to post the entire thing. It only got worse.

Our house was tp’d and a highly racist, threatening note was left.  We just experienced our first ever hate crime. A hate crime AGAINST MY SON!!! A CHILD!!

I grew up in Greentown, him as well.  He has never had any issues or comments at school or in the community This is a small town where everyone knows everyone. I’m not so naive to think that racism doesn’t happen here, I’m sure it does, we’ve even discussed it and how to handle it and what to do. It’s just never happened to him or us before.  I know it exists, but a HATE CRIME?!? A. HATE. CRIME?!?   This destroyed his innocence. This destroyed a childhood. This even effected my other 4 kids! This is not an all-white town, nor is this an all-white neighborhood. This one person does not represent this neighborhood or this town.

How do I tell my child that this was done? What words do I say to let him know it is not ok and this doesn’t represent this town, where everyone that meets him likes him?  That this can’t make him angry and bitter. That he is so much better then what they are portraying him as! His skin color shouldn’t matter.  I had to look him in his eyes to talk to him about something I will never understand first, but I saw firsthand the devastation on his face. I watched my child be crushed by someone else hatred and racism.
To see the pain in his eyes that is caused by someone’s ignorance.  I don’t know how he is strong enough to face this head on and want to try and use this experience he has had as a platform to raise awareness. He wants people to see that racism still exist. It’s real. It hurts. It destroys. It’s devastating, and it effects everyone.  He WILL rise above this. He’s going to make beauty from ashes. He will fight this. And he will win.

He’s on the honor roll, he swims, he plays soccer, and runs track. He even made show choir. Never gets in trouble. Not to mention he’s kind, sweet, caring, and he bleeds the same as everyone else. There’s nothing “different” about him.
I’m mad. I’m crying out for justice!  Did you think I would roll over and let you get away with this?! Did you not think that I would not rise up and protect my child? You have forced my child at the age of 15 to face hatred and bigotry at a level I cannot fathom. You have forced him to deal with this issue, that even a grown man should not have been dealt with. And he has face this head-on with more maturity then I could ever imagine for him. He has responded with a maturity well beyond his age.

He has every right to be mad. To be hurt. He says he’s “disappointed” and hopes we can stay at the new house anyways “as long as my mom, dad, and siblings will be safe in the house with me staying there too.”  He has every right to be mad yet there he sits more worried about his family and if they’ll be safe still. That is him. Thoughtful. Wonderful. Amazing. A CHILD! This shouldn’t have ever happened. I want to move. Yet he wants to stay. He doesn’t want the bully to win.

I’d like to say I handled this well and helped him learn something thru all this, but I’m the one that learned something from him. This momma is worried and nervous, and a million other emotions. I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, every day I am on high alert.  Something as simple as sending him out to catch the bus, has me in a mess. It has us all in a mess.   He’s wanting to use this experience as a platform to educate others and raise awareness. Until then, he is scared, he is emotional.  I watched my little boy fall apart, I watched him try to make sense of it, I have watched him struggle.
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So if you see him out, keep close to him. He needs people that see him for him more than anything now. This momma needs some peace.  Most of all PRAY!!! Pray for him and our family. And please help educate others. This can happen anywhere. This is real. This is happening still. This hatred effects everyone involved.

I will forgive you for one day, but for now you have instilled in all my heart, a fear I have never had before. You have instilled fear in my family, you have instilled fear and my children. This fear I have is crippling. It’s hard to keep my eyes on God and trust Him as we move forward. I have so many questions and not any answers. I’m broken and disgusted.  Though all this, I can tell you- you will not win! You may have knocked us down for the time being, but you have not knocked us out!

I have created this GoFundMe to help with the cost of any legal fees that we are about to take on, for a fence that I will now need to put up, and for a security system. Even if you cannot donate, please share.  We want to get word out there that this is still going on, and hopefully use this story to make a change. Thank you all in advance for any donation that you give.

Donations

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  • Rosemary Crocetti 
    • $15 
    • 25 mos
  • Deborah Haynes 
    • $10 
    • 25 mos
  • Sarah Morais 
    • $10 
    • 25 mos
  • Aaron Hlavatovich 
    • $10 
    • 25 mos
  • Christine Shaw 
    • $25 
    • 25 mos
See all

Organizer

Amy Howell Pundt 
Organizer
Greentown, IN
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