I can feel the pain and suffering and unrequited grief coming through your note to me. Unlike you, I have been spared the anguish, the outrage, of losing a child or a grandchild. In a way I suspect that your anguish as grandmother in the loss of little Brandon may be the worst anguish of all because you have not only lost your precious grandson, but you’ve had to watch your grieving son and his emotionally tortured wife anguishing the loss of their beloved, defenseless baby boy and forced to endure all these years of waiting for the justice the state of Texas has promised you.

I am not sure why your son, Eryn, and his wife, Melissa, did not get my letter of condolence and prayerful support to them which I mailed to them on January 3, 2007, in care of the Victims Witness Division of the D.A.’s office in Austin. Part of what I said in my letter to them is the recognition that they suffer in a way that I have never suffered:

“so I cannot stand directly in the flames of anguish you must feel.”

And in the letter I shared about my feelings for my little brother, Louie:

“I was five years old when Louie was born, and I helped Mama bathe and feed him - so helpless, so beautiful, so full of potential. I can’t imagine what it would be like to hear that he was dead - murdered - and buried in a remote place in a cardboard box. It is so horrifying that I cannot continue to think of it.”

I can hardly begin to comprehend the suffering you and your son and his wife have endured all these years. I reach out to you in your unbearable loss in the best way I know. I am praying mightily for you, praying that in time God, whose own son, Jesus, was crucified, will heal your hearts and lives with love that is greater than death and with God’s own peace that surpasses all understanding.

I have encouraged people I know to reach out in prayer and loving support to your son, Eryn and his wife, Melissa. On the web site I wrote:

Write to the suffering parents, the Baugh family, who are going through their own agonizing hell of loss of their three-month-old son. Pray for them. Surround them with love and compassion.

But things seem to have gone amiss. Your son, Eryn, asked that we remove this invitation from the web site, and so we have. Maybe it is simply too much of a stretch for him to trust our sincerity. Perhaps he believes - and maybe this is the way you feel, too - that because I and others are working to prevent Cathy’s death at the hands of the state that we can’t possibly care about you, too. But that is not true. I do care about your anguished hearts.

You ask in your note to me: “Are we not worthy of God’s love too?

And I in turn ask: who more than you is worthy of God’s love? I say that because you have suffered more than most of us ever will, and the God I believe in, revealed in Jesus, has always shown a preferential love for those who mourn, who lament while the rest of the world goes its merry way. “Blessed are you,” Jesus said.

I reach out to you in loving concern and much prayer, Grandmother of Brandon.

I hope the chasm is not too wide for our souls to touch.

I am open to any kind of communication you desire if I may, even in a small way, help to ease your anguished heart.


Sister Helen Prejean