By Jessica Meza
My name is Jessica Meza and I have lived in San Antonio for 5 years. I am a hometown native of Laredo, Texas.
On February 11, 2011 I woke up to an event that would change my life forever. An event that would force my family and I to face one of life’s most painful experiences and deal with a kind of pain that causes a profound change in a person. That cold February morning as my sister was on her way to work, she was ambushed and shot to death by her ex-boyfriend. The event left a deep wound within my family and myself. Kristine’s death at the hands of domestic violence completely captured the hearts of everyone who knew her and who could relate to her story.
It was not easy to accept that my sister had been taken so brutally. She was only 25 years old, with so many dreams and plans for her future. In just a matter of a few moments this future we had seen for ourselves and family was altered. As time went on, my family and close friends of Kristine quickly began to realize that the event could not just end with a tragedy and loss. Kristine was such a bright light of fun, happiness, and optimism. She was a beautiful person with a gift for listening to others without bias, and people gravitated toward that quality of hers. She had a very empathetic heart and wanted to inspire others with faith. A humanitarian, she aspired to travel to Africa and help the helpless.
Her spirit of faith and courage inspired us to become a voice for others. A voice for those who are silenced by fear and abuse. Domestic violence was the indiscriminate monster that took my sister’s life and has claimed too many precious lives. Domestic violence is the root of thousands of torn families, dysfunction, a vicious cycle that too often goes unaddressed and ignored.
The Kristine Meza Foundation was created by Kristine’s family and friends in response to the tragic event that took place February 11, 2011. Our anger and search for answers fueled our movement to stand against domestic violence in our city, in a county that currently has the highest rate of domestic violence in the state.
Our goal is to host an annual 5K Run/Walk in order to raise more awareness on the issue and impact of domestic violence, and this year we did! In partnership with Family Violence Prevention Services/The Battered Women and Children’s Shelter, The Kristine Meza Foundation, held The First Purple Run of San Antonio, on October 26th, and got over 800 participants out in support of our joint cause. The event was a huge success, and the community support was overwhelming.
Along with hosting an annual 5K to generate awareness, KMF’s goal is also to recruit as many support members and offer resources for help. Our mission as The Kristine Meza Foundation is to battle the issue of domestic violence by raising awareness in the city of San Antonio and educating younger generations.
The mission of Family Violence Prevention Services Inc. is to break the cycle of violence and to strengthen families, by providing the necessary tools for self-sufficiency through the delivery of emergency shelter, transitional housing, education, effective parenting education, and early intervention with children and youth.
To learn more about the Kristine Meza Foundation and how to get involved, visit www.thekristinemezafoundation.org
To learn more about Family Violence Prevention Services/The Battered Women and Children’s Shelter, visit www.fvps.org For the 24 Hour Crisis Hotline, please call 210-733-8810