New Heartland group offering support for families of homicide victims

A new support group formed in the Heartland for families of homicide victims.
Published: Aug. 3, 2022 at 5:38 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Homicide impacts more than the victims, it can have lasting effects on families’ lives.

A support group is forming in the Heartland that is offering some help.

“Although we’re not the victims our families have been victimized by what’s happened to our loved ones,” said Founder Debbie Goines.

That’s why Goines started a support group called Hear our cry for co-victims of homicide in the area.

“I got the idea when my brother was murdered nearly three years ago I couldn’t find any kind of support for us to help us emotionally with what we were going through and it took a while for me to come out of the fog and the intense part of the grief to finally decide that I was ready to do something to try to fill in a need that I feel like we have in this area,” Goines said.

For Timothy Slapinksi, this group came at a time where he needed it the most.

“It’s something we really need because we have a lot of families that are hurting and need all of the support they can get,” Slapinski said.

Slapinski says after losing his sister nearly four years ago, he is still grieving.

“The best way to cope is to talk about it and get it out,” said Slapinski.

Goines is hopeful the support group will make a difference to families who need it during tough times.

“We want to be advocates for our loved ones that were murdered whether it be with law enforcement, with local lawmakers to try to seek resources that we need to really slow down or stop the number of murders that are happening in our local area,” Goines said.

The first meeting will be held in two weeks at First Baptist Church in Thebes, Ill.

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