Newton & Jasper County Missouri

MADD Chapter

The Stephenson's
Lamanda-Gillming Stephenson
and children, Rayvyn & Tylan

After a long hard day of work as a prison controller, for Huntsville State prison. the young divorced mother of two went straight to pick up her four year old daughter, Rayvyn and six year old son Tylan, Lamanda's loving parents took such good care of her little son and daughter while she completed her work day. It was December 11th and Marvin and Lawanna Gillming had already purchased two little Parakeets from a local pet store and they were being held there until Christmas day, when their precious grandchildren would get their special gifts, from Santa Claus.

Lamanda had retrieved her two little Angels, as she and her beautiful babies said what was to be their last unpredicted, "Good-Byes"

Marvin and Lawanna Gillming, would never again be awaiting the arrival of little Rayvyn, with the dark brown hair and big brown eyes. They would never again, look into six year old Tylan's eyes of such a special ocean blue. No more, " I love you’s.....little arms wrapped so tightly around there necks as they received kisses from their beloved grandchildren. There would be no more special, " Mother and daughter days" and no more, “Father and daughter talks" from their only daughter. What was to be the ending of just another typical day another routine day of Grandparents and Grandchildren....would be the last.

As Lamanda drove her dark haired little girl and blue eyed wondrous son home, on this December evening, they sat with thoughts of Christmas joy, Santa Claus and pretty wrapped gifts, under the tree. Unbeknownst to the innocent little children, their mother and the loving Grandparents...something unexpected was about to occur...something that no one had planned or anticipated...something that would change the lives of Rayvyn, Tylan and their beautiful loving mother....forever. Something was about to happen, that would leave Marvin and Lawanna Gillming in a remaining life of loss, pain and unbearable grief.

In this Texas town and just a few miles away, a local tavern had just ordered one of their drunken customers to leave the premises. The liquor business didn't do the responsible thing and make sure the drunk was driven home. They didn't think about what could occur if thier intoxicated customer left, his drunken hands on the wheel of what turned out to be the murder weapon.

Less than a mile from her parents home, the only daughter and loving mother was the target of this drunken driver.

The highly intoxicated driver, going over a hundred miles per hour crashed his truck into the young family's vehicle.

Six year old, Tylon was murdered on impact and now en route to a local morgue, while hid four year old sister and mommy were in an ambulance, sirens blaring and being exported to the nearest hospital.

The beautiful dark haired, brown eyed little sister was hooked up to a machine and awaited her dad and family's arrival, for they needed to say their Good-Byes

As Rayvyn lay brain-dead and her big brother, with eyes of ocean blue, arrived at the local morgue, their loving mother was being brought back to life, as the doctor and nurses tried their best to save the now....childless mother....

After, thirteen failed attempts...Lamanda were now on her way to join her two beautiful little children, in Heaven....for eternity...

Could it have been that Lamanda was hovering over her body and also peering down upon her little son and daughter, as their tiny bodies lay lifeless? Could it have been that this was the reason for the multiple failed attempts for her second chance of life?

Lamanda perhaps didn't want to come back to earth...She instead wanted to do what any mother would...and that was to be with her babies.

She couldn’t let them go alone.... she couldn’t be left motherless... she needed to be with her children.

On this cold December night the drunken murderer may have prevented Lamanda, Tylon and Rayvyn from arriving to the comfort of their home, with the twinkling Christmas tree and beautiful wrapped gifts, however, he didn't prevent them from arriving to their forever home...to that beautiful kingdom of Heaven, They are together now for eternity.

The drunk driver...he died too, leaving behind two little children of his own, while Marvin and Lawanna Gillming are also left behind with only memories, pictures and the thoughts of that dreadful December 11th evening. That forever, stripped their lives leaving them with a huge hole in their hearts.

The grieving grandparents will never again have their grandchildren's toys strewn on their living room floor and no Rayvyn and Tylan filled with Christmas delight, as they uncovered their already purchased Parakeets, on Christmas morning.

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