American professional tennis player, Serena Williams, and her elder sister, Venus talked about the effect of the loss on their family.
“Well, violence has affected our lives personally — we lost our sister, she was the oldest — to violence. But I think what people don’t realize is how violence really affects not only your family, but your friends, your neighbors, everyone,” Serena said, as she broke into tears.
Continuing from where her sister stopped, Venus explained how violence affects not only the victim but also the perpetrator.
“Also violence not only affects the victim’s family, but also the family of the perpetrator. It ruins their lives as well. If you’re a mother or father, it’s not your plan to have your child commit this. It ruins lives. I think one of the hardest days of all of our lives was having to tell our sister’s children what happened to their mom. You can’t prepare for that.”
Venus also narrated the violence they had to put up with in their community, while practicing to become what they are today.
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“I remember one afternoon there was a drive-by and we hit the ground. Guy got off the sunroof and started shooting, and we went back to practice. Our dad didn’t want us to keep secrets in our family, so he didn’t tell us not to tell our mom, and so we went home and we were so young and we didn’t understand the gravity of it all, thank God. … My mom was just so upset. So upset. But unfortunately sometimes as a young person, you can get used to that. And no one should have to get used to that.”
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