Forgiving the Dead Man Walking

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Overview

It was just another time of enjoying milkshakes and small talk. Neither Debbie Cuevas nor her boyfriend, Mark Brewster, gave much thought to the white pickup truck that had pulled up beside them on the riverfront. Until . . . a revolver thrust through the drivers window . . . a hand jerked Debbies head back and a voice said, "Dont do anything stupid" . . . and a quiet Friday evening abruptly became a nightmare.

For the first time, here is the...
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1998 Hard cover New. No dust jacket. lt shelf wear...Book Is New! Sewn binding. Paper over boards. 256 p. Audience: General/trade.

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Overview

It was just another time of enjoying milkshakes and small talk. Neither Debbie Cuevas nor her boyfriend, Mark Brewster, gave much thought to the white pickup truck that had pulled up beside them on the riverfront. Until . . . a revolver thrust through the drivers window . . . a hand jerked Debbies head back and a voice said, "Dont do anything stupid" . . . and a quiet Friday evening abruptly became a nightmare.

For the first time, here is the untold other half of Dead Man Walking, the movie that depicted killer Robert Willies death-row relationship with spiritual advisor Helen Prejean. Now the woman whose testimony helped send Willie to the electric chair tells her side of the story--the side America hasnt heard. In gripping detail, Debbie Morris--formerly Debbie Cuevas--recounts her hours of terror . . . and her years of walking an agonizing road back to wholeness.

More than a riveting narrative, here is an incredible tale of courage, faith, and forgiveness. In a world where all of us struggle sooner or later with unforgiveness, Debbie Morris is a living testimony to the grace we long for: grace that shines more brightly than we dare believe, bright enough to triumph over the darkest evil.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Already familiar to readers from the movie Dead Man Walking, this horrifying crime story, related here by one of the victims, becomes an inspiring morality tale of one woman's redemption. In 1980, Morris, then a 16-year-old high school junior in tiny Madisonville, La., was parked with her boyfriend, Mark Brewster, along the Tchefuncte riverfront sipping a milkshake when two men suddenly appeared. Mark and Debbie were kidnapped: he was tortured and left for dead, while she was terrorized and raped repeatedly. With extraordinary presence of mind, she managed, incredibly, to talk her captors into letting her go. The aftershock, however, lasted for years: her relationship with Mark deteriorated; she dropped out of high school; and she suffered recurring claustrophobic fears. Her abductors, Robert Lee Willie and Joe Vaccaro, were captured, and Debbie aided the prosecution in its successful bid for the death penalty for Willie for the earlier rape/ murder of Faith Hathaway. After the trial, she discovered, "Justice doesn't really heal all the wounds." Her true path toward healing was hard won: She's often angry--at Sister Helen Prejean's attentions to Willie ("Where was the help I needed when I felt so alone?"), at her family, at God ("I'd found it easier to forgive Robert Willie than it was to forgive God"). But at the end of a journey that rings true and intensely human, she looks to her husband, son and new life and ceases to see herself as a victim, but instead as a survivor. (Sept.) FYI: Morris's story first appeared on a Frontline segment titled "Angel on Death Row."
Library Journal
For years after, she was known only as the "l6-year old from Madisonville," who had been talking with her boyfriend, Mark, when Robert Willie and Joseph Vaccaro kidnapped them. Mark was tortured and shot but survived, and Morris was repeatedly raped but eventually got out alive. Willie and Vaccaro were captured and Morris tried to move on with her life, eventually marrying and having children but always living with hurt and resentment. When the movie Dead Man Walking was made, she contacted Sister Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking, LJ 6/15/93), the nun who counseled Robert Willie in prison and who was the focus of much of Debbie's anger. After speaking with Sister Helen, however, Morris was able to use her Christian beliefs to learn to forgive. Although Morris does include details of her awful ordeal, this is more a personal reflection on human nature than a traditional true-crime book. The writing is somewhat self-conscious and stilted in spots, but that only gives the story a much more human and vulnerable feel. For larger public libraries.--Christine A. Moesch, Buffalo & Erie Cty. P.L., NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780310222651
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Pages: 251
  • Product dimensions: 6.27 (w) x 9.33 (h) x 0.96 (d)

Meet the Author

Debbie Morris is currently a public school special education teacher with a particular concern for troubled students considered at-risk for future involvement in violence and crime. She and her husband live with their two children in Louisiana.

Gregg Lewis is an award winning author or coauthor of forty books, including Tom Landry: An Autobiography, The Big Picture with Dr. Ben Carson, Forgiving the Dead Man Walking with Debbie Morris, Jesus M.D., and Safe at Home.

Gregg Lewis es un escritor galardonado coescritor de cuarenta libros, incluyendo Tom Landry. Una autobiografia, La foto Grande con Dr. Ben Carson, Perdonando al Hombre Muerto Caminando con Debbie Morris, Jesus M.D.Y Seguros en Casa.

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Customer Reviews

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