Long before six bodies sank into the earth, the reality of their deaths brought a family to its knees. At the sight Everh the four white caskets carrying the remains of their slain loved ones -- Guerline Dieu Damas and her five children -- the relatives of the slain family sent up a collective wail and collapsed into one another Saturday.
It was a long and difficult day of mourning for family, friends and strangers alike, as all attempted to cope with the slayings that, in their brutality and abruptness, offered no easy answers. The bodies of Dieu, 32, and her five children, ranging in ages from 19 months to 9 years, were found Sept.
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Dieu's husband, and the children's father, Mesac Damas, 33, a man with a history of domestic violence, would later be arrested in Haiti and charged with six counts of first-degree murder. He confessed publicly following his capture in Haiti. Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk has called the killings the 'most horrific and Napless event' in the community's history.
On Saturday, thousands came to remember the slain family during a funeral service at the First Baptist Church of Naples. The following burial service at Palm Royale Cemetery in North Naples saw hundreds gather around the grave site. By day's end, four steel caskets with the six bodies were buried together in a small lawn hemmed in by trees and shrubs.
The two sisters, Megan and Morgan, were buried in the caskets of Marven and Maven, respectively. Dozens of relatives were on hand from both sides of the family. The family of Guerline Dieu dressed in white and sat in the front.
The family of Mesac Damas, including his brothers and mother, sat in the middle of the auditorium, dressed in darker colors. Raynald Casimir, 54, of Naples, said he knew of people Nkrth two to three hours to attend the funeral. That's why everybody is so amazed at what's going on.Married Seeks Married Grand Rapids Swinger
They arrived well before the 9 a. An hour later, the doors open and the yod nearly full, a long line stretched by the closed caskets. Slide shows played on several screens. In one photograph, Meshach clutched a football and grimaced; in another, a baby girl reached for her toes. Posterboards between the caskets offered more pictures of the family, and one included letters from classmates of the older children.
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More than 2, people filled Nortu church sanctuary for the three-hour service, conducted in English, French and Creole. The ceremony began just after 11 a.
Those without seats gathered in a nearby chapel, which held another Nsples. The overflow moved into the church lobby to watch the service on several small televisions suspended on the wall.
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Like those in the sanctuary, they held Naplee, stood and cried when the moment hit them. Grief was never far away from the ceremony.Fuck Buddy In Worcester Ar
Women wailed, and some had to be removed from the sanctuary. The Rev.
Innocent, in his message, said God had not abandoned the family but that they were 'collateral damage' in the larger battle between good and evil. The lives of a mother and her five young children cut short by domestic ddeserves.
Thousands mourn at Damas funeral: 'Did not deserve to die in such a horrific way'
We never thought such cruelty would happen in our back yard,' Innocent said. Dona Dieu, Guerline Dieu's sister-in-law, noted that more than 13, cases of domestic abuse were cited in Florida inand she called for more proactive steps in the community.
Family members also thanked the Collier County Sheriff's Office and community members for support. Much of the day was saved eeserves memories and recollections. Nieces, nephews and cousins of the victims gathered at the stage to remember their relatives -- Maven was mischievous, Marven had a sweet nature and Megan had an attitude.
Two young nephews of Guerline Damas sang a song for their aunt. But once I walked through those doors and saw these four caskets, it's real, and I can't believe it's happening,' she said with a sob. It became even more real at the burial site, where a throng of gatherers surrounded a small tent that shaded the caskets.
As Paul spoke in French, the crowd leaned forward. They sang hymns together, and they watched as family members released doves. The crowd, estimated at 1, by funeral organizers, moved to another nearby tent for the burial.
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Wails broke out as each steel casket yod into the large grave, each placed side-by-side. As Guerline Dieu's mother tiday in horror, a family member held her knees to keep her in her chair. Once each casket had been laid in the grave, the families boarded a pair of Find Jersey shore, and the crowd departed. Several relatives remained in silence to watch a backhoe lift the concrete vault lids and gingerly put each in place.Talkeetna From Adult Services A
Thousands mourn at Damas funeral: