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Man exercises a year of forgiveness after drunk teen driver kills wife, two children

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  • Irena
    Dec. 28, 2007 8:08 p.m.

    Thank you for publishing this article. There are many fine, strong people here in this state, who can lead the way. Let's not let the hateful grab all the headlines.
    So please print more stories like this.

  • Now that's newsworthy...
    Dec. 28, 2007 8:40 p.m.

    A fine article that inspires and uplifts. We casually throw around the term hero in too many cases but for many of the subjects of your article the word demands a role.

    The article was so well done that I saved it to share with my children and to use anytime I ever have an opportunity to discuss forgiveness and love.

    I am glad to know there are such amazing examples in our society. Thank you for writing it and for finding it newsworthy.

  • Jarvik = Excellence
    Dec. 28, 2007 11:15 p.m.

    There are several ways to look at this article. I have heard that every community has amazingness in it, but we only get mass exposure to community amazingness if those with the skill and resources publish it. Therefore, along with Chris Williams, Gary Ceran, the forgiving mother of the shooting victim and the other forgivers mentioned, Elaine Jarvik (the writer) is also a critical, brilliant part of this story.

    Elaine Jarvik, whom I have never met, once wrote a story about 10-12 years ago about a man, and the story was so provoking, I still remember the phrase it taught me: "hug therapy." I wonder if she remembers that story. It too, was brilliant.

    Part of the genius of a good story is in the subjects of the story, and part of the genius is in the telling of the story.

  • DeAnn
    Dec. 28, 2007 11:23 p.m.

    A true example of modern day Crist-like love. We need to hear more.

  • kelly miller
    Dec. 29, 2007 12:00 a.m.



    Thou who knows of all suffering,
    Please help me to love and to forgive.
    When my doubts turn to murmuring,
    And I dwell on the pain that I relive.
    Till my heart grows so cold and so dim.
    Please help me to change from within.
    Please help me to forgive all men.

    Please prompt me that I will keep my resolve,
    And set my mind for when a tragedy strikes
    That I'll pray hatred can quickly dissolve.
    This I'll do before resentment spikes.
    When I forgive, my thoughts will not distort.
    And I won't folly through some retort.
    I will seek Thee, for Thy love and comfort.

    And of those who are hardened criminals.
    Who avoid facing all their deeper needs.
    Help them face judgment unto prison walls.
    Where we can begin to plant in them seeds.
    They, also, have much pain to undergo.
    For what price it takes to repent with woe.
    Help me share with them the sweet peace I know.

    The Healing Power of Forgiveness- President Faust

  • kelly miller
    Dec. 29, 2007 12:10 a.m.

    The Peril of Hidden Wedges

    A faller's wedge placed in a tree
    Remained where it ought not to be.
    The branches grew and swelled around.
    And then one night without a sound-
    An ice storm weighed the burdened trunk.
    And down the branches went- kerplunk.

    Some feelings hurt and trouble so.
    But, to others they do not know.
    It festers much and builds inside,
    Though how hard one might try to hide.
    Till one day it resurfaces.
    And lays more blame with purposes.

    A hidden wedge placed long ago.
    Has pierced my heart and now does grow.
    Where it can canker easily.
    Imagined hurts and jealousy
    Must be resolved, and then destroyed,
    For life was meant to be enjoyed.

    A burden shared is always best.
    When we solve hurts, lay them to rest,
    The enemy becomes a friend.
    When we forgive there is an end.
    We close the gap, we sort it out.
    That's what life is truly about!
    President Monson

  • Better Men Than I
    Dec. 29, 2007 12:17 a.m.

    Masterful story telling introducing us to people who have truely followed the Master's teachings and have overcome the natural man.

    I would hope to be so devout and understanding. Until then I'll continue wearing the sandwich board sign: Work in Progress.

  • wonderful
    Dec. 29, 2007 6:59 a.m.

    Wonderful article. Thank you.

  • Anonymous
    Dec. 29, 2007 7:29 a.m.

    I appreciated the writer's research explaining emotional forgiveness. Forgiveness certainly is a process and it takes work. Our own personalities are part of the mix.

    I was in that congregation in West Jordan and heard him speak. He is a brave, impressive man who will work hard to make a good life for his remaining children.

  • Ed
    Dec. 29, 2007 8:42 a.m.

    A wonderful story and one that everyone should read and ponder and reflect on. I thought it interesting that Stacy Hanson, the man who lost his son in the Trolley Square shooting and he who himself is paralyzed and is trying to rebuild his life....I thought it interesting and truly understandable his comments about why he wants to stand again...so he can give Talovic, the shooter the bird. He is still going through his process but I don't think, based on his comments in today's story, that he has forgiven Talovic for what he did. I am not saying he should because we all deal with pain/grief/heartache differently. I only hope and pray that one day he can not only walk but that he will, when he does walk...choose to not flip off Talovic. That he will choose to forgive.

  • Travis
    Dec. 29, 2007 9:30 a.m.

    Mercy cannot rob justice. Let us forgive freely but we don't need to advocate the dismissal of justice and put all the crooks right back on the street to do the same thing again.
    Those guilty of crimes should pay for, and be accountable for thier actions.
    This article quoted another case where the vicitm's family advocated leniency for the person who commited the crime. That is not forgiveness that is social irresponsibility.
    I do agree with forgiving those that do ill against us but they do need to satisfy justice for thier actions.

  • Phil
    Dec. 29, 2007 9:51 a.m.

    This is the hardest article I have read in a long time, because it strikes close to home, and renews deep sadness in our family. So many news stories are of death or destruction. A positive news article is a nice change of pace. Im reminded of a LDS teaching admonition of Paul- we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things. I too will be saving a copy of this article for a time in need.

  • Curtis
    Dec. 29, 2007 9:58 a.m.

    Fantastic article! By far the best article I've read in deseret news all year. This is a must read for everyone. Thank you!

  • Sherman
    Dec. 29, 2007 10:57 a.m.

    According to Hugh Nibley, we are here, in this mortal existence, to learn two things: forgiveness and repentance. Thank you for giving some insight and examples as to how we, as individuals, might go down that road a little further. This truly is a subject worth researching and discussing, as it provides healing and produces miracles. Please keep publishing stories on this subject.

  • Thank you
    Dec. 29, 2007 11:04 a.m.

    That was uplifting. We need more of this ...

  • Pause for Thought
    Dec. 29, 2007 12:22 p.m.

    Wonderful article. You've given us something to ponder beyond the "If it bleeds it leads" philosophy of news reporting. Thank you.

    I was both surprised and pleased at comments by Ron Yengich. It has been far too easy for me over the years to equate him with the "bad guys" he represents.

    Beyond the spiritual there seems to be physical evidence that turning the other cheek and not "judging" is beneficial for the forgiver. Another witness that Christ's words are "true."

    I've got a long way to go.

  • MBP
    Dec. 29, 2007 1:08 p.m.

    Fantastic Article. Best story I have read this year! Thank You!

  • A Quote To Remember
    Dec. 29, 2007 1:42 p.m.

    It has been said; " Hate is like taking poison and hoping the other person dies. "

  • Wow
    Dec. 29, 2007 2:29 p.m.

    I am so impressed with Chris Williams. His courage and understanding is so admirable and I hope to learn from this. I'm very grateful that this article was printed! I've been trying not to cry while reading it at work!

  • TVB
    Dec. 29, 2007 3:33 p.m.

    A great reminder to us all. The perspective that these individuals have is what many look for, but few find. Most that view themselves as being "wronged" against are so consumed with hate, anger, animosity and vengence that their life becomes selfish, one-dimensional and destructive of others. Stories like this help us all to refocus on what's truly important and get a clue about how ridiculous most of our "pity parties" really are.

  • Suzanne
    Dec. 29, 2007 4:55 p.m.

    A short time ago I finally was able to forgive someone who had hurt me very deeply. For a while I even contemplated suicide because I was so depressed. But then, in answer to many prayers, I was able to finally forgive him. The relief and sheer happiness I've felt ever since,is beyond words. Forgiveness is a gift we give to ourselves. I admire Mr. Williams for his ability to forgive someone so quickly. I am going to keep this article to refer to when I need a lift. Thanks to Elaine Jarvik for such outstanding journalism, and to the Deseret News for printing it.

  • Matt
    Dec. 29, 2007 6:32 p.m.

    Travis--
    You're right, mercy can't rob justice. But who decides what "justice" is? You? Victims? The only real justice will occur in a different place, in a different time, when all things are known, and the One True Judge passes judgement...

  • Lift Others
    Dec. 29, 2007 7:49 p.m.

    Thank you for an amazing article!

    Thank you to those who have shown these fabulous examples of forgiveness!

    I admit it....I love to have the good in my life...and I very much dislike it interrupted by trials, problems, or hurts by others.

    Thank you for helping me with some introspection. Why do I believe that I deserve to never have problems? Wow...and eye opener for me...

    I have been struggling lately with this very thing. I have absolute trust in a Heavenly Father who loves me and is trying to bless me...even when I can't see in what ways He is trying to bless me.

    When I am drug kicking and screaming to the next blessing of growth, I don't see it as much of a blessing. And then a few more steps and I begin to understand in a very small way that His infinite wisdom is so very superior to my limited desire to always stay in the "good" life areas of my life.

    Thank you again for the insight.

  • Scooter
    Dec. 30, 2007 12:24 a.m.

    Absolutly wonderful article. Was very touching and insiteful. Wouldn't the world be a much better place with more people like Mr. Williams?

  • crazykat
    Dec. 30, 2007 12:37 a.m.

    Thank you for this story. Forgiveness is so important. Forgiveness really does help the victim. I really liked how Brother Williams said it.

  • Justice Required
    Dec. 30, 2007 6:46 a.m.

    Citizens who have been hurt by criminals can forgive drunk drivers, murderers, child abusers, etc, but please don't require our court system to do the same. People who make bad decisions which harm others, should suffer the full consequences for their actions.

    In Websters, under "forgive", it states two definitions: (1) To give up resentment (2) To give up all claim to punish or exact penalty. When we are wronged by someone, God expects us to follow the first definition, NOT the second. Otherwise, we all become throw rugs for evil people to walk on continually.

  • gooddeeds
    Dec. 31, 2007 12:55 a.m.

    this article has inspired me to do moer research on forgiveness.
    I study health issues and seeing some of the research has begun brightens my day.
    I feel strongly about forgiving and now I want to do more to help me and others understand how truly wonderful, beneficial, and uplifting it is to forgive (even the little things).
    thank you for this well-researched and well-presented article.

  • ME
    Dec. 31, 2007 10:11 a.m.

    Here is my take, but I am interested to know what others think. As children of a loving Father in Heaven it is our duty to forgive everyone of both definitions of forgiveness. Obviously that doesnt mean the person that committed the crime is going to change their life or go through the repentance process, which is why we have the judicial system to try to help those people change by enacting punishments, penalties, and programs to get their lives back on track. Hopefully the judicial system can start the process and then as neighbors we can help out. Obviously none of us are perfect and neither is the judicial system, so we will have that opportunity to be judged by a righteous/fair/loving Judge in the eternities, which I hope we have all improved enough to have a joyous reunion.

  • katy
    Jan. 2, 2008 3:55 p.m.

    I greatly appreciated the extremely well written and thought provoking article on forgiveness. It struck a chord with me on many levels. I have recently recognized and acknowledged that I may have a problem forgiving others when I feel I have been wronged. Even though intellectually I know that holding on to anger and/or pain is not beneficial, emotionally I often find it hard to release the hurt and extend forgiveness. I will use this article to help me in my need to become a more forgiving person and thank the author and the newspaper for printing an article of such value.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 8, 2008 1:37 p.m.

    I heard about this article and can't find it anywhere on the web. Could you please forward it to me? Thank you.

  • Lynne
    Jan. 8, 2008 1:47 p.m.

    Hi, just e-mailed saying I would like a copy of the "article". I noticed on top of this page, it says "read story". So, please dis-regard my previous e-mail. Thank you.

  • Anonymous
    Feb. 6, 2008 6:03 p.m.

    Personally knowing the williams family has made it even better and more real on how this could happen to anyone and the way he just went out and forgave this person is amazing. it's always good to read something a little more moving in the paper

  • guitarboy South Jordan, UT
    April 8, 2013 10:11 a.m.

    Elaine Jarvik wrote an article in the early or mid 90s, about a man, and it caused my wife and I to begun using the phrase "hug therapy" to describe something very profound and beautiful.

    This article about Chris Williams is troubling for me, because it reminds me of the truth that hurts--my tendency to react emotionally to unreasonable behavior from others--and my inability to forgive. I am very worried that when the time comes for me to lose something that I feel is critical to my life, I will be unprepared to forgive. The article explains that we can learn forgiveness, just as one can learn to play the piano. But I am concerned that I do not have the time to start learning to forgive, because I am too busy working on other things.

    Thank you for the article.

  • Russ Salt Lake City, UT
    April 8, 2013 12:20 p.m.

    Guitarboy,
    Like with everything in our lives we can learn to forgive. Especially if you begin now and focus your heart on what is true about life. All people will eventually die and move on to whatever awaits us on the other side. Some may leave in accidents like this or quietly of old age in their sleep. What matters is learning that this life is transitory and we take whatever love or hate may be in us.
    I sometimes wonder what I would do in this situation. Would I forgive or hate? Live your life in the way that you would want to be and you will find you live up to the best within you when you are put to the test. When it comes down to it I suppose what I am saying is, Love is more powerful than hate and love can heal. Hate will only and has only ever destroyed. Wanting to do better is the first step to a greater understanding of who you really are in your heart. God bless you.

  • cleancutmatt Provo, UT
    April 8, 2013 3:42 p.m.

    Okay,and what about a story on how Cameron is doing (the person encouraged to move on)? Are we really having this conversation? It is a good story...

  • Neanderthal Pheonix, AZ
    April 8, 2013 5:31 p.m.

    "Man forgives drunk teen driver who killed wife, two children"

    Not me. I'd see the guy got a huge jail sentence. Then perhaps, after serving his time, I'd think about forgiving him.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    April 9, 2013 8:46 a.m.

    Personal responsibility is more than hygiene, How things look or what is cool. I can't be responsible for any one's actions but my own. I'm the biggest screw up in the whole world. Some times I'm not the brightest bulb am the street. Stuff happens. I'm feel so sorry and I'm so angry at my self I can get sick. I try to make restitution and make amends. All tho Others have forgave me, they say that it's not that big of dill, it is to me It's hard to forgive my self.
    .