From life, a loving son, brother, uncle,

From the first breath our children take, to the last breathwe take, we watch, we worry, we pray.

Our children are our flesh and blood.Their joy is our joy. Their dreams are our dreams. Their pain is our pain.Their death is our death.

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1 year, 4 months and 13 days ago; Tuesday, August 9,2016 you took an exceptional life —the love of my life, a loving son, brother,uncle, grandson, nephew, cousin, friend and most importantly, a father of 5- fiveprecious children (one unborn at the time of his murder) roaming this Earthwith a piece of them missing every single day. A piece of them that can’t bebrought back, replaced or made up for. A piece that Tevin Jenkins and Tyrone Nedtook from them! Did you know that onthat night his pregnant girlfriend and their unborn child was in that home alsoand had to be traumatized by the choking smell of gunpowder and the hot, gut-wrenchingfeeling of the blood from the love of her life flowing from his body upon thecarpets upon which he laid, under her feet,  while she stood there helpless unable to doanything; heart racing not knowing if the life of her and her unborn childwould be next as she hears the bullets mercilessly corrupt his defenseless bodyagainst the closet door? Do you know that to this very day, every night atexactly 10:45pm, their daughter awakes from her sleep screaming and cryingbecause she was traumatized within the womb of her mother? Do you know that histwo oldest children had to undergo psychological treatment because of thetrauma caused by the two of you? Did you know that his 4 and 5 year oldchildren had to visit their father in a graveyard and cried because they’llnever be able to see their father again? Imagine raising a child alone. A childthat was never able to meet their parent at the hands of another human being.Imagine having to explain to your children what happened to their father.Imagine children having to grow up at the ages of 4, 5, 12 and 15 without theirfather; having your father miss father daughter dances, football games,basketball games, proms, first steps, ballet recitals, holidays, weddings.

THISIS OUR REALITY. A week after they murdered Rodney, we were forced to be theones to have to enter the crime scene to receive our son’s belongings. Wearrived in the home to find what? Blood stains, body matter and scars etched inour memory that will never go away. Being a good parent is a selfless act. It is an act of trulyloving outside of one’s self.

To lose a child, especially to lose a child tomurder, is an agony so consuming, so dark, that your brain cannot and will notcomprehend. It invades tour sleep and haunts your will to live. Real loss isonly possible when you love something more that you love yourself.  You simply cannot fathom the emotions, thethoughts, the actions, the financial losses we have experienced over the pastyear. Here are just a few of those losses:As a result of the murder, both my family and his girlfriendwere forced to move out of long time residences because of fear for our ownlives or that of other loved ones- having to forfeit deposits, pay new depositsand monthly rent for the safety of our families.  The horror about the suffering that Rodney mayhave suffered; attacks of panic; a fixation on maintaining a day-to-day routinewithout it being shattered at times by outbursts of intense emotion;restlessness and insomnia; the inability to concentrate; flashbacks to thememory of receiving the death notification; self-blame from his girlfriendabout something she could have done to prevent the murder. It torments hergreatly, the question of whether Rodney was cognizant of his life ending; andutter hopelessness and helplessness. If we had to choose one word to describeit all: NUMBNESS.

 After you have cursed Heaven above, after you have cleanedhis blood from the floors and walls of his home, after you have painstakingly,over the course of a year, removed his belonging from his home, afterconstructing a temporary marker for your child’s gravesite until a permanentheadstone could be designed and engraved, you know you will NEVER againexperience real peace or true happiness. Forever gone are the memories we wouldhave shared, the dreams of Rodney we would have seen fulfilled. Think of neveragain hearing your child’s voice.

Of feeling the warmth of his embrace, hiskiss on your cheek.  Hearing hislaughter. Of simply knowing he is near. Think of one day lying on your deathbed surrounded by your grandchildren and great grandchildren.

The last face yougaze upon before leaving this earth would be that of your child. For us, thatis forever gone. With admiration, I have watched as Rodney Sr. lives with thebrutal task of mourning the death of his son, providing for his family, stayingstrong for his wife, daughter and grandchildren, all while his heart, his worldhas been shattered. A good man, a strong man living a nightmare not of hismaking. Rodney has the wisdom and serenity to accept that which he cannotchange. This is not the life he has worked hard for, nor the life he hadplanned for himself and his family. He has no choice but to keep moving forwardwith the loss, the memory and love for his only, slain son.

Today, we do our best to fill the void that cannot befilled. We wear Rodney’s clothes, we talk to him, we surround ourselves withhis memories. I write this copious, cathartic impact statement not only todefend his name and honor, but to say to whoever is reading this- as we sithere having to endure the glacial process of the thought of prosecution forthese two men while we mourn his death, we have no choice but to think abouthow they will be able to laugh and visit with their family. Think of that. Theymurder our son in cold blood and one day they may have the freedom to walk pastus on the street as our son lies buried in the ground. We who love Rodney respectfully as the court, in the memoryof Rodney Joseph Savoy Jr.

, to delay, for as long as judicially allowed, theday this cold- blooded murders once again walk among us. In a pure world, ajust world, light should never shine on that day.  That was my boy, our Rodney.

The son, brother, father,uncle, boyfriend, friend we have forever lost. The castles Rodney would havebuilt on this Earth, with the bounty of gifts bestowed upon him, we will neverknow. Evil, for reasons only evil knows, took it upon themselves to steal fromus and the world. We take comfort as best we can in believing that Rodney, our loving,kind-hearted Rodney, is waiting for us in God’s Castle in the Air.


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