Most times when you watch the news you never know the people involved. Things just kind of happen and life moves on. Then one day something happens to someone you know and you can't believe it. Its rather fantastic in a way, even when the news is tragic. In my case, someone I know, the man who supervised my current career early on, my mentor, my friend, ended up in the news. Michel Veillette - Read at your own risk. By the way, I explain further at this point so people with a weak stomach please turn back.
To sum up, he had an affair. His wife found out and confronted him. He said he was leaving. She lost it and attacked him with a knife and frying pan. He managed to overpower her and killed her in the process. Then he for some reason decided to burn his house down. His four children were still inside.
That is enough to make anyone's stomach turn. Understand though that I know this guy. He is a good person and he loved his children. He could not have, in his right mind, chosen to burn down his house with the intentions of killing his children. I know this to be true so I can only imagine he wasn't in his right mind. Again a disclaimer for people with weak stomachs, this is your last chance to stop reading.
So being a logical person, I had to go over the events as told by the various news stories. Putting together the pieces, I find the family was having money issues. His wife was working part time to make ends meet. His jobs were flakey with their payments(He was a contractor). Four kids plus a $400k house are not cheap. Everyone knows that money is one of the hardest things on a relationship. When you have money, things are fine, but when money is tight, so are tensions. I can't imagine they were perfectly happy.
What happens when a couple gets in fights regularly? They begin thinking about what it is like to not be in a fight. Some people attempt to work it out, others try to find someone to comfort them and remind them what it is to be normal. Michel seems to be the latter. He got himself a girlfriend on his current jobsite. I would bet she never yelled at him over money.
Now he still loved his kids, he was excited to go see them every time he got to go home. His wife, on the other hand, probably was more of a pain in his ass than anything. She probably saw him drifting away and she was the only thing holding the family together. Working part time, taking care of the kids as practically a single mother and paying the bills whenever they had money. Then she sees it. A $2000 charge to their credit card from a jewelry store. Checking it out, it was on Michel's card in the city he was currently working in. Final proof that he was having an affair.
Michel heads home for the weekend. He calls his parents and tells them how happy he is to see his kids oblivious to the fact that his wife knows about the other girl. He gets home, helps tuck his kids into bed, and then his wife confronts him. $2000 charge? Shit. What about your kids! We'll I love them to but with the way things are going with us, can you blame me? Of course I can, its things like this that are ruining us! Fine, if that's the way you want it, I'm leaving.
Michel heads upstairs to grab some things. At this point things get a little hazy. Perhaps his wife, thinking to keep him from running out on his kids, starts a fire in the hallway, perhaps not. Next thing Michel knows, she is standing in front of him brandishing a Frying Pan in her right hand and a Kitchen Knife in her left. She attacks him. She gets a good blow to the head, a stab in the leg and another cut in the stomach. A few more minor cuts and he manages to catch her hands a little dazed from the hit to the head and the adrenaline starting to pump from the fight. Wresting the weapons from her grip, he manages to pin her to the floor, one knee against her chin, the other holding down her chest. She keeps struggling and he knows if he lets her up, she will keep attacking him. He grabs the knife and stabs her in the chest once! twice! thrice! Not sure how many times he stabbed her, he gets up knowing she is dead and won't attack him anymore.
Again, the reports get hazy at this point because if she did start the fire, it was at this point he noticed it. If she did not start the fire(which seems to be the more likely scenario), he headed down to the garage and got the jug of gasoline. Perhaps in the haze of getting hit in the head and the pumping of adrenaline, he thought it would stop her from getting out. Perhaps his condition made him think destroying the house would fix their financial problems. Perhaps he thought his life was ruined and so he tried to kill himself. Perhaps he thought he could cover up the evidence. Perhaps anything, a fire was started in the hallway.
Michel watched it burn for a few moments, the gasoline accelerating the fire's spread 10 fold. Then a moment of clarity came to him. His children were still in the house! He rushed the fire, but his cut leg and stomach could barely hold him up and the flames were raging hot. It pushed him back into his bedroom. Every step back the fire pushed him was a step away from his children. Finally there was no way out and he turned and dove through his second story window. Laying on the ground still dazed, cut, bruised, coughing, and winded, his mind worked over the last 30 minutes over and over.
A neighbor, seeing the flames, called the fire department. They arrived 4 minutes later to find a battered Michel on the ground. "My four kids are still inside," he told them, forgetting about his wife. The firemen rushed in finding 3 of the 4 kids and the wife. The kids were still breathing and rushed to the hospital. The body of his wife was moved to the lawn. The fourth child was found a short time later, dead at the scene. The three other children died shortly afterwards. All four would be found to have died from smoke inhalation and speculated to have met a peaceful end by dying in their sleep.
Michel would be the only survivor of the ordeal. He spent over a week in the hospital recovering from his wounds. He would give a heavily drugged confession to a police officer that he had an affair, his wife caught him, she attacked him, and he started the fire. Later, he would claim it was in fact his wife who started the fire, though coroners found no evidence of smoke inhalation nor toxins in her blood stream and found it unlikely that she was alive when the fire was started.
Now my mentor, my friend, faces the death penalty for the crimes of murdering his wife, aggravated murder of his children(murder in anger), and aggravated arson(lighting his house on fire).
I am deeply saddened by this course of events. He was a good man and did not deserve this to happen. Divorce, maybe, the loss of his wife and children possibly at his own hands, never.
Understand hat I attempted to make this recount as unbiased as possible. Most of the data can be found on the link I posted earlier by reading through the stories. Some of it I've heard through other sources. I am not here to judge. I am here merely to observe and hope something good will come of it.
Starting off with a sad note to get it off my chest. Ending with a better note. Most of you may have noticed the new comic. Hopefully they will come once a week now or as I feel inspired. I definitely don't intend to do much work on this comic unless I get into it but its something to cure the boredom for now. I hope you enjoy.