Her attorney says Tenika Revell loved her son to death ... literally. The 40-year-old Brooklyn mother brutally killed her 7-year-old son, Bernard, using a hammer, a belt, and even her own bare hands last week. She tried to kill herself as well, but her attempt was unsuccessful.
What could love possibly have to do with that? Well, Revell was suffering from terminal breast cancer. According to the New York Daily News, even after undergoing a mastectomy, it had spread to her ovaries. She knew the end was near and that she wouldn't be there for her boy, so instead she chose to kill him, say those close to her.
“She was a yard and a half beyond wit’s end,” defense attorney Harvey Soss told the paper.
Revell's long-term boyfriend, Terrace Johnson, who says he helped raise the boy, said, “She loved him so much she didn’t want nobody else to have him.”
It's unfathomable that a mother could think this way, but Revell had demons from her past that plagued her as well. She was reportedly abandoned by her own mother at the age of 7, and had worked as a prostitute since she was a teenager. She also had problems with drugs, but she was reportedly a good mother who spoiled her son, and Johnson says she wanted to save Bernard from a similar fate. “She didn't want her mother or none of them to get Bernard," he told the paper.
It's a place I try not to go very often, but as parents I think we all at times imagine what would happen if we were to die and leave our children. It's painfully heartbreaking to think that we wouldn't be there to guide them, and see who they become, and love them along the way, but to take their life is unthinkable. Of course, for most of us, the life Revell led is unthinkable too.
None of us knows how we would react upon learning that we're going to die, and while Revell's actions are absolutely outrageous, I can't help but feel for her too. Because it seems like in her own warped way, she tried to do what she thought was right, even though it was so very, very wrong.
Do you believe this woman killed her son out of love?
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