“All human life has its seasons, and no one’s personal chaos can be permanent: winter, after all does not last forever does it? There is summer, too, and spring, and though sometimes when branches stay dark and the earth cracks with ice, one thinks they will never come, that spring, that summer, but they do, and always." T.Capote
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An Extraordinary Life
Robert Del Conte
Robert Del Conte founded the San Felipe Humanitarian Alliance and headed a group home for foster children on a ranch in New Mexico, where Ms Davis and her five brothers and sisters grew up. Mr. Del Conte was among the first Americans allowed into war-torn Kosovo to oversee humanitarian relief efforts. “We worried about him when he was overseas in a war zone—we never thought he’d be murdered in his own home town,” Ms. Davis said.
Driving home one evening in October 2001, Mr. Del Conte stopped to help someone whose car appeared to be disabled. The man stole his wallet, knocked him out and slit his throat, then threw him into a gully, where his body was found three days later. The murderer was apprehended when he used Mr. Del Conte’s credit card at a local tourist stop. “He murdered my father for the price of a steak and eggs breakfast at Denny’s and one night at a hotel, Ms. Davis said. “My father lost his life for $60.00.”
Enduring the pain After the initial shock and horror, The Del Conte family found themselves at the center of a painful investigative process that put them all “under a microscope.” The media “dragged my father’s name through the mud,” questioning M. and Mrs. Del Conte’s entire way of life, and speculating that their work with problem children had put them at risk.
Even after the trial, at which the perpetrator, subject to the “three strikes law,” was sentenced to 22 years, Ms Davis found that the simplest task brought tears to her eyes. “I just had to have faith that the next day wouldn’t be as bad as this one.”
“You’ve got to get through the firsts, seconds, and the lasts,” Ms. Davis told the assembled crowd of more than 120 people, many of whom have lost loved ones to violence. “:My father never saw his first granddaughter and he didn’t get to attend my wedding.”
An inspirational message she found when cleaning out her father’s desk vividly illustrated his strength and commitment. “The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow: do good anyway. (See the entire sentiment below). Displayed on Robert Del Conte's desk and contributed by his daughter Belisa Del Conte for Victims Voice, Vol 14, Number 4, June 2002
by Kent M. Keith
1. People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.
2. If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. do good anyway.
3. If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.
4. The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
5. Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.
6. The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.
7. People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
8. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.
9. People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.
10. Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.