Skip to main content

Most of you remember a little girl in Westminster, Colorado who was abducted and murdered last October, named Jessica Ridgeway. I am one of her great-aunts, and wrote a Grieving Room diary (linky here) on the week of what would have been her 11th birthday. Instead, we buried her. Our hearts are broken and may never be mended, and I am even more heartbroken for the Newtown families and now, the Boston families, who have lost their loved ones to violence. I know how they feel.

I'm writing this diary, though, to ask for your help, and I can't tell you how hard it is to swallow my pride and say, I need some financial help. I live 170 miles away from my family in Westminster, and although I have been using my credit cards to travel back and forth for meetings with the District Attorney and the various hearings, I've realized I'm sinking further and further down into a big money hole. I'll give you more details below the fold, if you are interested in my story.

Because the police fortunately caught Jessica's killer, and have charged him with the crime, he now is going to stand trial. I have been at most of the hearings in Denver, and although I worried that I may have to quit my job to attend the trial (set for September), I have been assured by my employer that I won't have to worry about it. The big problem is that our office is a small business with only me and one other part-time employee. My boss, the owner, can't afford to pay me for the three weeks I'll be at the trial.

I've also taken a lot of time off to attend the preliminary hearing and support my family.  Jessica's mom is my niece, the daughter of my sister. We're moving forward with lots of different things, and a lot of money was sent to Jessica's mom and grandmother, but they have closed that account and sent the rest of the money to a foundation which we've set up.

Mind you, I don't hold that against them for wanting to fund the foundation. I would too. However, I'm kind of in a bind because although I thought I could handle the financial aspect of gas, hotel rooms, and other expenses associated with traveling back and forth, I'm realizing that these expenses coupled with the amount of money I've lost when taking time off without pay to travel back and forth is becoming a serious burden on my husband and I.

So I'm asking, very humbly, if some of you, any of you, would want to help me out during this difficult time. I am not the kind of person who can do this easily. What I can do easily is try to help others whenever I can, so if someone else needs help I'll do whatever I can in my power to help them.

I've set up a funding link at, under  I'd appreciate any help you can give me, and if you aren't able to, I really do understand. In the interest of full disclosure, I have had some help from the Westminster Victim's Advocates with grocery cards, and also some money from the Victim's Assistance fund at the beginning of our ordeal. My mom has sent me $100. So I've recouped some of the money I've already spent. I don't always need a hotel room, only when my husband and dog come with me, because I can stay at one of my sister's houses if I'm by myself. I am mostly worried about the bills and the mortgage if I lose 3 weeks worth of pay, which is the biggest issue facing me. I just hate asking people for financial help but sometimes, we can't do it alone. This is one of those times, for me.

8:02 PM PT: I've been asked to add a few pictures to this diary - here are some of my favorites from her 10 years of life in this world....
jessica school pic 2012
~Jessica and Baxter 11.12.06

Originally posted to Lightly, oh so Merrily on Sat Apr 20, 2013 at 05:59 PM PDT.

Also republished by Community Fundraisers, Positive Intention and Lovingkindness, House of LIGHTS, and Kossacks helping each other.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site