final chapter–thank you travis alexander



I got up Monday morning like any other day and like no other day. I felt the same apprehension I felt the day I headed to downtown Phoenix that first day I attended the Jodi Arias trial in early January 2013. Nervous, not knowing what I was going to face, but confident I needed to go.

I gathered my things together including a stack of letters I’d prepared to give all of Travis Alexander’s siblings, his Aunt and some friends. Just as every day I attended of the first trial, I was not going to walk in there empty handed. I thought long and hard about how I wanted to bring this to closure. The first day I sat with the family, after being invited by their victim advocate, I carried a letter offering my support specifically around victim impact statements. It was one tangible thing I knew I could help them with having written and delivered my own and having some basic skills in the writing department.

Mine was published here.

One of Travis’ siblings had reached out to me with questions about writing their statement so I knew, more than anything, that I needed to be there to support them being delivered. I had read an article online for the second time that I found very clear and descriptive about grief and I know some things about this moment they are facing so I decided to share it with each and every one. You can read it yourself here:

5 Lies You Were Told about Grief

I also wrote a letter sharing what was in my heart and off I went with my blue sweater, my angel pin Tanisha had given me, the blue ribbon still on display in my cabinet and my elephant ring. I also carried the natural trepidation of walking in to a situation where you don’t know what kind of mine fields you might run in to.


I had decided last year to not attend the second retrial although I’d been there almost every day for the first go round. It was for entirely personal reasons that I don’t feel the need to get in to. I still supported the family in my own way from afar and feel good about my decision and role.

Things were also catapulting in my own life which, on reflection,  came as a direct result from all of the events and miracles that happened because I decided to step in that first day.


I posted ardently on the Websleuths forum each day I came home from trial. Some days that was at midnight as a typical day looked like — go to work in the morning–rush to the courthouse after eating lunch in my car–attend afternoon session–go to the hotel nearby for a wind down after court–go visit my brother in the hospital (he was hospitalized twice during those months)–run by his house to check his cat–finally get home late at night and do my “reporting”.

I know many of you out there reading me right now know me from that time. We were all on that roller coaster together. I couldn’t have done it if not for the support from the web out there holding me up. I don’t regret any of it.

After the trial was over, I got a mysterious message on Websleuths from an editor that simply said “you should pursue writing”. I asked her what I should do and she pointed me toward WordPress and some other suggestions and support so here I am. Through this endeavor, I decided to also pursue writing my memoir. I took a sabbatical and wrote 30 chapters last Fall and am still working on it. I hope to have it completed this year.

I’m working on it here on my other blog Middle Child.

I had been thinking of this for years but I finally realized I had a story to tell so that set me on course–one of healing through tragedy but you still have to tell the tragedy story. That’s also the one I’d been avoiding. I can deal with it now. I also had to live the healing.


Through the writing journey I was invited to join a private online writing group. And that’s where I met the love of my life. We are getting married in less than 3 weeks. I credit all of this newness and evolving to having the courage to walk in to that courtroom the first day and go on the journey it took me. We never know where our pivots lie.

I drove down Monday to the same parking lot I’d used for months. As I walked out, nervous, I passed Jodi Arias’ mother pulling in. Talk about timing. I doubt she recognized me but I recognized her.

As I walked in the building, Jennifer Wilmott held the door open for me. She is Jodi Arias’ attorney. It was all quite surreal.

I had not attended the several months of the last go round nor had I really arranged attending Monday–I basically just showed up. I went up the same elevator I’d ridden in with Juan Martinez one day and introduced myself. Once I landed on the 5th floor I saw many familiar faces–Travis’ friends Chris and Sky Hughes, reporter Beth Karas, 3 jurors who had served on the first trial. It was great, and poignant seeing these faces.


Shortly we were taken in to the victim ante room adjacent the courtroom. I ended up viewing the proceedings from that room along side the 3 jurors and one of Travis’ friends Pam who I’d met many times in court the first go round.


The victim room has it’s own bathroom, table in the middle and large viewing flat screen on the wall with chairs lined all around the room. Travis’ family was milling through going to the bathroom and understandably nervously walking around.  This was a big day for them. I got some hugs (including from Juan Martinez) and met some new people. One of whom, Tanisha’s friend, was there with her little baby, likely around 6 mths old. She had a seat in the courtroom so we offered to watch her baby while the hearing took place.


He was such a good little baby, only crying once as the family delivered their statements and we all watched, standing, in the victim room. We were lucky in that our view was from a camera behind the Judge’s head facing to the back. This meant we had a rare view of the faces of all those speaking. I found out later this was not the view that was publicly televised. I’m glad that Pam and I just intuitively snapped some photos of the screen because they ended up being valuable later to those who didn’t see that view. It all felt very surreal, knowing this was the day this entire thing ends, for the most part. It ends primarily because Arias did NOT receive the death penalty.


On a break, the baby’s mom came in and put him in a little kangaroo type pouch on her body. He fell quickly asleep. She decided to go ahead in to the courtroom for the last leg of the hearing with him just like that–asleep in the pouch. Once Jodi Arias got up to speak her unimaginably cruel words, that little innocent baby started to cry. Imagine that. A baby getting disturbed from slumber by that evil spew. As the Mama rushed up to run back to our victim room (which we could see on our monitor and quickly dashed to open the locked door), everyone saw Jodi Arias flash her head back in annoyance that direction.




The baby quickly settled down so we encouraged his Mom to go back in and we’d take it from there with him. By that time the 3 jurors had been led to seats in the jury box (which was great) so it was just Pam and I back there then. The baby naturally crawled to me so I was playing with him a lot using my flouncy skirt as a little tent for him. Later someone pointed out the sticky sweet rice cracker dangling from one of the ruffles of my skirt.

I picked up the baby at one point and as the Judge delivered that Life WITHOUT parole sentence to this monster, I stood there inches from that screen holding that precious innocent spark of life in my arms. I had written on Facebook that morning as I left “doors opening, doors closing”. I could almost hear that steel door slam shut behind Arias as I held close to my breast this beautiful symbol of “life goes on”.


I became consumed with this entire body feeling of the Circle of Life as I also contemplated in that moment that I’m on the verge of becoming a stepmommy to a 3 year old. My life is most definitely going on and emerging in to new birth in so many directions. I’d been kind of stuck in a standstill for many years, alone, when I showed up that first day at the trial.

Now, my life has become a trampoline of love and growth and healing. I credit this all to that one decision–to take the risk and show up that one day.


After it was over we all gathered in the victim room. There were hugs and tears as you can imagine. Of course I handed the baby back to his Mama and had to show her the stuck rice cracker dangling like a Christmas ornament on the tree limb of my skirt layer and we laughed. I thanked her for the beautiful opportunity to hold her baby in that moment.

The family chose to not deal with the media gathered in the front of the courthouse so were escorted out a back door. I walked out with the 3 jurors, right out the front. The media was swarmed around Jennifer Wilmott giving her ridiculous interview still claiming her lying sociopathic client was some kind of abuse victim. Blah blah blah.


I turned to walk to my car and saw a familiar person standing all alone. I walked to her and put my arms around her and she was shaking all over. It was Detective Flores wife Corinna who I’ve had lots of contact with over all of this. In fact we were setting up a lunch date just days before. She’d lost her son very recently in a terrible accident so I was surprised she even had the strength to show up for this. She is very tiny and was consumed with emotion so I suggested we go sit down on a bench and talk. I was glad to have run in to her in that moment and connect.

Her mother and sister showed up carrying bouquets of blue and purple balloons (purple for her son Tony, blue of course for Travis). Her mother handed me a blue balloon which was so sweet.


Corinna and I sat for quite a while and talked and just sat in silence. She moved over so close to me at one point it felt like she was going to sit in my lap, it was that kind of need for closeness. I felt like I wanted to pull her on to my lap and hold her. Once she was surrounded by more of her family, I walked with my balloon to say goodbye to some folks I saw in the distance–Chris and Sky, Beth Karas, etc. Kathy Brown, aka “Cane Lady” asked for a picture with me and the man Paul Sanders known as “The 13th Juror” who did a lot of great writing at the trial this time. It was great to meet him.


I finished up there and decided it was time to go. As I turned the corner of the courthouse on to an empty street, alone with my blue balloon, the words sprung in my head “you walked in here alone and you’re walking out alone”. I felt such an overwhelming feeling of completion and confidence in this journey. It’s hard to describe feelings but this was like walking on air and firmly on the ground at the same time. A smile washed over my healing face. I did well I thought. I’m proud of myself.

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I reached my car and texted Katie Wick who I’d met that very first day I attended the trial. It was her first day too. We became fast friends. She’s now attending law school right near the courthouse so on a whim  thought she could meet for lunch as I had the time. She didn’t answer so I texted her, sat awhile and called my fiance who so sweetly had left me a message early saying “call me if you need to talk when this is over”. One of the benefits of being with a Psychologist. He’s so supportive.


As we were chatting Katie texted back saying that she had a break between classes in 15 min. I turned the car around, parked and went to one of our usual lunch spots, ordered two salads, got a small can of Sofia champagne and rose lemonade to make a, I must say, delicious little mimosa.  By the time she got there after her class I had the lunch all ready for us.


It was SO GREAT to see her. We had really bonded through some tough times and it just didn’t feel right leaving that last day without connecting with her. It just worked out perfectly.

Over our chopped salads we reflected on this journey–how we met, how she ended up nightly on the Dr. Drew Show (once with me), how we really immersed ourselves in the trial to the detriment of our lives, how we were affected by it all, how our friendship thrived and mostly how our lives have greatly changed for the better.  She in Law School, me getting married. Both of us meeting huge dreams we had given up on before that trial.


It was a remarkable conversation and I’m so glad she could meet me.

I’d written a letter to all the Alexanders in my little packet I gave them with the grieving article. In it I included some of the causes I’d been championing behind the scenes–the main one being the issue of murder victims being able to be trashed and murdered again in the courtroom by their killer’s lies and stories made up for their defense. I feel very strongly about this issue and how us taxpayers ARE FUNDING THIS.  This trashing of the victim was NOT allowed when we went to trial in 1990–I remember the defense dipping their toe in direction and objections sustained.  The entire Arias defense was architectured around trashing Travis–all unfounded lies from the mind of a vicious butcher who killed him defenseless in his own shower, nude. This needs to end. This just simply needs to stop! It’s beyond the beyond.


Lo and behold Katie shares with me she wrote Tanisha the night before also sharing how this trial –and their brother–influenced her for the good and get this. She is doing her Law School thesis on that very topic–victim trashing in the courtroom with Travis’s case being her case study.  Imagine that. She hopes to influence change through this and feels so strongly about it, she’s devoting her final paper to it.

Katie and I had not talked about championing this issue much less writing the family about it. I love that kind of serendipity and connection.

breadcrumbs2 breadcrumbs

I devote my life to following these breadcrumbs so when I see their fruition like that, it just warms my heart and convinces me I’m on the right path. There is no better feeling than that, let me tell you.


I’m glad it’s over. I also know a new chapter of grief opens up for Travis’ loved ones. I was terrified when our trials finally ended. I had devoted my entire life to that fight for 2  years (much less than them) and all I had left was a gaping hole in front of me. It’s not an easy transition. When people say to them “aren’t you so relieved it’s over?” expecting pure happiness, it’s a challenge. Many will crash now. This awareness is very important for me to educate on. There will be days they will wish it was still going on to focus on. Staring at an abyss is not an easy halt.


I’ve let them know I’m here and understand. All of our lives are going on now.

I will always think of Travis Alexander as a major influence in my life–his life will mean more than his death. Yet this trial pulled me deep in myself to find my way back to clear air again. That kind of healing opportunity is one you don’t get every day and I will be forever grateful.

Rest in Peace dear Travis. Hopefully you know my sister somewhere out there and you guys are having a ball. I know I am going forward living the life you both would be proud of.


On a final afterthought, I woke up Monday morning to an email from the jewelry designer in the UK telling me our wedding rings were ready for sending off and when I got home that afternoon, my custom made wedding dress was waiting for me on my doorstep.


Doors closing/doors opening, indeed.

66 thoughts on “final chapter–thank you travis alexander

  1. sarah h

    Every time I read your blog, so many differnt emotions arise into my thoughts. I feel your heart in every word! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences.

  2. Another absolutely fantastic post, KCL. There is so much I could comment on, but I am certainly glad you were there for the ending of the trial. In a way, I feel you were also representing all of us who have carried you and the Alexander family in our hearts for so long. Bless you, and thank you.

    I am thrilled that Katie Wick is continuing on her path to becoming an excellent lawyer. I would love to be able to read her thesis. Well-needed topic!!

    I, too, worry about the after-crash and the feeling of helpless, “What do I do now?” I have faith that the family will find their way and that we never forget their love and support for a brother who deserved no less.

    So amazing to think you wedding is getting so close now. The goodness that comes from tragedy is never-ending. Never let your eyes miss that fleeting gift.

    Thank you for taking us along on so many journeys.

    • Thank you so much (always) Spellbound for reading and sharing. I know you’ve been through some things recently too and hope you are doing ok, Love. Thanks for your sweet comments here. ❤

  3. norsegirl

    Kathy, this was so heartwarming and beautiful, I am crying tears of happiness at your circle- Katie’s too. So proud of her for taking the plunge in to Law School and a dream. You two would make a dynamic legal duo for getting legislation changed in this area. I am behind you 100% in everything you do- I am on your team! Keep me posted on anything I can do to assist your endeavors and I hope, hope, hope to see you next time I’m in AZ! Blessings to you and John.

  4. Monica Rossy

    Kathy KatieCoolady, once again a beautiful peace of work! Thank you for your thoughts, your touching words, and your championing causes. Thank you for being there for Tanisha, her baby, all of Travis’ family and Travis’ aunt, Tony’s wife Corina, and everyone at court we all came to care about. You are right about serendipity — it sure plays a big role in our lives especially when we are sensitive to so many signs around us. Finally, congratulations on your wonderful life with a new man and family. God bless you and guide you continuously on your journey. (So glad you got to hug Mr. Juan Martinez!!) Wow, your article made me cry as the last one you wrote.

  5. Tricia E

    Once again …. Amazed. You truly have a gift. I’m left here smiling that there are people like you out there in this world and also that you went to court that day, so long ago. I look forward to your future writings and hope your wedding is everything you dream. I’m sure your sister is beaming with love and pride. Thank you for … Well just for being you.

  6. Perhaps it’s time to change to bread crumb, to rice crackers. Thank you so much for your vast support for many of us affected by this trial as well as the Alexanders. Your insight measurably calming.

  7. Judy Sexton Biddle

    This is the best write-up I’ve seen since Arias was sentenced! I’ve read other articles by you and like them all, but this one was different in a wonderful way. Thank you so much for showing us the FACE of Jodi Arias as she was sentenced. I was thinking earlier, while watching the sentencing of Hernandez today. We got to see him from the front and it seems all others who are sentenced, from the front also. But, with Jodi Arias…we only got to see the back of her head. So I do, really, appreciate the front views of her!

    I am happy that you have found a soon-to-be husband also! He is a good man. I can tell by his smile. He has the same kind of smile my husband had, and he was the love of my life. Cancer robbed me of him in May of 2012, after 55 years as his lifetime partner! Believe me, part of me went to the grave with him. Or at least, most of my heart went with him. May you have at least that many years with the love of your life, and like I said earlier, I can tell he’s a good man! You are fortunate. Good men are hard to find in this day and time. I can see his love for you, too.

    Thank you for doing all you’ve done through this long trial. Thanks for writing, thanks for sharing your heart and soul, and thank you for showing so many that indeed, the living go on living. May you be blessed, Sweetie.

    Hopefully, some day in the future you can share with us again when Katie Wick is the Prosecutor! She sat and learned from the best…Juan Martinez and Detective Flores! She is like you…a ‘light’.

  8. Brian McFarland

    Wow, I am at a loss for words. The bonds that came together from this horrific tragedy, the friendships, no, family that was formed. It is from love. God bless you! I followed this trial from the beginning, know all the players by name. I cried at all the heartbreak, and rejoiced at conviction. I cheered for Katie each night on Dr Drew. I am a staunch KarasOnCrime member. I have read Paul’s book, and now I read of your tragedy, your own personal hell…. wow. Thank you for taking us into your life like this. I feel I have added another family member. God bless you Katie!

  9. donnah2244

    Kathy, Oh my goodness, I got chills so many times reading this. So well written and well, it just gobsmacked me (to use one of your words that I now love).

    There are not enough words for me to express how happy I am for you and John, that handsome man of yours. What a beautiful couple you are.

    Travis’ life has taken on so much meaning from all the good that he has brought to everyone who became involved in this horrible tragedy.

    Thanks for being you and I send all my love to you and John and wish you much happiness in your life together as man and wife.

    I look forward to seeing your wedding pictures!!

    • Thank you so much doll! I will be posting pics as we go along..he’s forbidden me to share our rings until after the wedding — he’s a sentimental fool like me. But I got them today! 😀 Thank you for reading and sharing your heart.

  10. sharon

    Kathy, thanks for the memories, the great ones, the sad ones, the posts you made late at night just so the rest of us had a glimpse into the courtroom, praying for justice for Travis. You are a wonderful writer and I look so forward to reading your book. I appreciate you being there for Travis’s family. I appreciate and respect you for taking a stand against the way victims are trashed in court with no penalties for doing so. So happy about your upcoming marriage! And……I love my Juan poster. We love him and Detective Flores for doing such an awesome job in giving the family some justice. Have a happy life, God bless you my friend.

  11. Gail

    I put this on another FB page… but wanted to make sure you saw it… Amazing, amazing job lady!.. ” I credit all of this newness and evolving to having the courage to walk in to that courtroom the first day and go on the journey it took me. We never know where our pivots lie.” If I may… that last sentence will be my new motto… … You are an amazing inspiration and thank you for sharing your pain and healing with us.. Your words touch me like no other… and someday I will be in touch to get your permission to share them with others… Your strength makes us strong too… ❤

  12. Sophie

    KLC, OMG how glorious to find you again after becoming acquainted with you to some degree at web sleuths. I’m getting older, so not quite sure what case it was….most likely the infamous Casey Anthony.

    Kudos to you and Katie Wick for standing up for the victims of crimes. It is a heinous thing for a defense team to re-murder the victim during a trial. As “enlightened” people how can we allow our court system to use character assassination of victims as a defense?! In my opinion, this is travesty and should be stopped. The defense team’s job is to defend their client, but this should not condone or excuse telling monstrous lies in a courtroom. During the trial, Nurmi and Wilmott did not earn an ounce of respect from me. In fact, it was just the opposite. To allowed attorneys to spout odious claims without a scintilla of proof is vile and reprehensible.

    Thanks for those front shots of criminal Perryville inmate 281129 during her sentencing hearing.

    KLC – WOW, Congratulations on your engagement and upcoming marriage. I am delighted to read your life has expanded to include a wonderful man, child and future!!! Wishing you now and always the very best.

      • Sophie

        LOL, not easy to consider yourself a celebrity when you are addressed as Perryville inmate #281129, sure you would agree.

        Thank you for standing up for victim’s rights.

  13. You are an excellent writer, so I’m glad you were encouraged to use your talent and decided to do so. I’m sure your book will do well. And isn’t it interesting the twists and turns life takes – congratulations on your marriage!

    I am not a victim of violent death as your family and the Alexanders are, but the horrific nature of his death was a visceral experience for me, and I was glued to the first trial. I tried to stop watching as it was so upsetting to me, but I just could not. I felt so sorry for the Alexander family as their loved one, the victim, was trashed. I prayed for them as each day progressed. Your posts helped make it bearable for me.

    I agree with you that the defense of trashing the victim should be banned. With Arias, it has again been shown to be ineffective, and it is unfair to the family and friends of the victim. And I am so very sick and tired of hearing it doesn’t matter if an action is immoral as long as it is legal. This is another aspect that makes the trashing defense possible. Additionally, this defense puts so much negativity out into the world that affects so many unnamed people, like you and me. However, I note to myself this is the only defense those intelligent people could conceive. She had no defense, so they made one up for her.

    As to her ultimate punishment, I think being in a cage for the rest of her life is a better punishment for Arias than a quick death. Prison is a place where the inmate has no control over anything. And Arias is a control freak needing to be in control of everything. Furthermore, she is young, so she will be miserable for a very long time. As a sociopath she may feel nothing because of Travis’ death, but her own discomfort will be very important to her.

    Best Wishes in all your endeavors!

  14. Just a quick note of thanks to let you all know I’m reading each and every one of your wonderful comments and will have more time this weekend to reply. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment. It makes my entire day/week/month /etc. ❤

  15. lovelaw

    Beautifully written! I experienced a roller coaster of emotions on the ride through reading. I can only imagine what you experienced while writing it.
    Love to you, for being the awesome, beautiful, being that you are!

  16. Levanger

    I saw a link to your site on, and I just have to say your words leave me almost speechless. You are surely an angel meant to bless the Alexander family with your knowing words, strength and presence, and I am in awe of you sharing your beautiful gifts given the pain you have been through. I don’t know if I could do it. Congratulations on your engagement and your new book, which I look forward to reading.

  17. Dee Marquez

    What a beautiful story and it’s a shame it is so true
    I have met some awesome people because of this bad situation but it taught me to be a better person and love everyone of your friends and family because we never know when it will end. I remember you standing by me talking to Kathy Brown and Lisa the 13th jouror. Thank you my friend for all you’ve done. Justice finally served..

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  19. This entire blog was like that new book you finish too quickly because you just can’t put it down. I enjoyed every word. However, I have to say that my favorite part was the part about the baby!!! Sweet little angel. The irony of how the baby started crying when the monster was speaking. Wow that’s powerful. I had not thought about that until I read your blog. This was awesome, thanks.

  20. Katie, it’s your friend from Websleuths – Martha in the UK. I’m crying real tears reading this and this particular line of yours “pulled me deep in myself to find my way back to clear air again” really hit a nerve. Not Travis related, nor Katie Cool Lady related … just life related.

    Here’s wishing you all the joy and happiness in the world and wishing the Alexanders peace and resolution if that’s possible.

    PS> Did you get to watch Ripper Street in the end? We’ve got another cracker – Peaky Blinders which you might also like .. not sure if it’s crossed the pond yet.


    • Hi Martha! Greetings from across the pond! We got our wedding rings from the UK, how cool is that? (I’ll show pics after the wedding). Ya know I bought Ripper Street DVD and doggone it I can’t find it–somewhere lost in my house with my Downton DVDs too. arrrrgh. I see Peaky Blinders on Netflix so will add it to my list. Nice to see you again! xo

  21. KCL, I always enjoy reading what you write and this was bittersweet to me. I followed you last year during the trial, and I looked forward every night to reading your observations and insights. While I am glad that this trial is finally over, I am sad that all of the great people I “got to know” on web sleuths will go their different ways to other cases and that I probably won’t run into them again. I’m so happy for you and your new life you are starting! I will try to remember to keep up with your blog!






    • spellbound4

      Allie, it is so nice to see you here. I think we have all welcomed you into our families as a dear friend. Sending warm thoughts and hugs to you and all your family. May many blessings be bestowed on all of you. 💙💖

    • Oh Allie, so wonderful to hear from you. Your post here is a testament to my belief that LOVE WINS. I think of you all often and know this is a rough time, after the trials are “over” (not that anything is ever “over”). Anytime any of you need to talk or just a shoulder, I hope you know I am always here. Lots of love to you and all of you. ❤

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