D.K. Foreman – Personal Blog

Archive for October, 2014

Pray for America: Mother of four, 30, shot dead in California road rage attack as her husband drove her home from the supermarket

by on Oct.28, 2014, under Hispanic Community, Revival In America

Mother of four, 30, shot dead in California road rage attack as her husband drove her home from the supermarket
•Perla Avina, 30, was being driven home by her husband Mando Lopez
•Got into ‘confrontation’ with another driver in East Oakland, California
•Unidentified motorist then reportedly fired at their black Toyota Camry
•Bullet pierced vehicle’s windscreen and struck mother of four in the face
•Ms Avina, whose youngest child is 18 months, pronounced dead in car
•Last night, the victim’s parents issued tearful plea to members of public
•Police are appealing for information on the suspect, who fled the scene

A mother of four has been shot dead in an alleged road rage attack as her husband drove her home from a California supermarket.

Perla Avina, 30, was traveling in a black 1998 Toyota Camry with her partner, Mando Lopez, when they got into ‘some type of confrontation’ with another driver in East Oakland.

The unidentified motorist then allegedly fired at the vehicle, causing a bullet to pierce the windscreen on the passenger side and strike Ms Avina in the face.

Happier times: Perla Avina, 30, was traveling home with her husband, Mando Lopez, in East Oakland, California when they got into 'some type of confrontation' with another driver. Above, Mr Avina and Mr Lopez

Happier times: Perla Avina, 30, was traveling home with her husband, Mando Lopez, in East Oakland, California when they got into ‘some type of confrontation’ with another driver. Above, Mr Avina and Mr Lopez

‘I didn’t see any signs of life. There was no waking [her] up,’ Mr Jackson told NBC.

Paramedics arrived at the scene within minutes of the shooting between the 400 and 600 blocks of 98th Avenue. But despite their best efforts, Ms Avina was pronounced dead in the Camry.

Smashed glass: The unidentified driver allegedly fired at the black 1998 vehicle, causing a bullet to pierce the car's windscreen on the passenger side (pictured) and strike Ms Avina in the face. The driver then sped off

Smashed glass: The unidentified driver allegedly fired at the black 1998 vehicle, causing a bullet to pierce the car’s windscreen on the passenger side (pictured) and strike Ms Avina in the face. The driver then sped off

1414457057157_wps_19_image003_png

Tragic: Ms Avina (left and right), a medical receptionist who is believed to originally be from Los Angeles, and Mr Lopez have four children, the youngest of whom is just one-and-a-half years old, authorities said

Tragic: Ms Avina (left and right), a medical receptionist who is believed to originally be from Los Angeles, and Mr Lopez have four children, the youngest of whom is just one-and-a-half years old, authorities said

Police later said the motivation for the shooting was likely road rage, with a spokesman saying: ‘Road rage may have possibly occurred It is extremely dangerous. In this case it turned deadly.’

Ms Avina, a medical receptionist who is believed to originally be from Los Angeles, leaves behind four children, the youngest of whom is just one-and-a-half years old, authorities said.

None of the children were in the car at the time of the shooting, KTVU.com reported.

Yesterday afternoon, Mr Jackson described Ms Avina as the ‘heart’ of the family, saying: ‘She made the family work, with the kids, and school and working.’

Drawing a crowd: Police said the motivation for the shooting was likely road rage. Above, people surround the damaged car at the 400 block of Rossmoor Avenue in Brookfield Village neighborhood following the attack

Drawing a crowd: Police said the motivation for the shooting was likely road rage. Above, people surround the damaged car at the 400 block of Rossmoor Avenue in Brookfield Village neighborhood following the attack

Scene: Paramedics arrived at the scene within minutes of the shooting between the 400 and 600 blocks of 98th Avenue (pictured) on Sunday. But despite their best efforts, Ms Avina was declared dead in the Camry

Scene: Paramedics arrived at the scene within minutes of the shooting between the 400 and 600 blocks of 98th Avenue (pictured) on Sunday. But despite their best efforts, Ms Avina was declared dead in the Camry

And last night, the victim’s grief-stricken parents, Jose and Herlinda Avina, said finding their daughter’s killer is the only thing that could slightly ease their ‘inconsolable pain’.

“This was a beautiful young woman with four young children and there was no reason for it. This never should have happened” – Darlene Cederborg, Avina’s manager

‘If [anyone] knows the person who did this, please turn him in. Turn him into the police, please, please, help us,’ said Mrs Avina through sobs.

Darlene Cederborg, Ms Avina’s manager at the Emeryville medical clinic she worked at, added that her employee was a ‘shining spirit’ who ‘always had a smile on her face’.

‘This was a beautiful young woman with four young children and there was no reason for it. This never should have happened,’ she said.

Oakland police are offering a $30,000 reward – increased from an original $20,000 – for information on the suspect, who has not yet been caught following the incident shortly after 12.30pm on Sunday.

Anyone with information is asked to call the force’s Homicide Unit on (510) 238-3821 or Crime Stoppers of Oakland on (510) 777-8572

Grief-stricken: This evening, Ms Avina's grief-stricken parents, Jose and Herlinda Avina (pictured together), said finding her killer is the only thing that could slightly ease their inconsolable pain

Grief-stricken: This evening, Ms Avina’s grief-stricken parents, Jose and Herlinda Avina (pictured together), said finding her killer is the only thing that could slightly ease their inconsolable pain

Paying tribute to a dedicated mother: Resident Dwayne Jackson (pictured), who heard the commotion, rushed outside and dialed 911. He said Ms Avina was the 'heart' of her family, saying: 'She made the family work'

Paying tribute to a dedicated mother: Resident Dwayne Jackson (pictured), who heard the commotion, rushed outside and dialed 911. He said Ms Avina was the ‘heart’ of her family, saying: ‘She made the family work’

“I’m praying for the Avina family that the Lord will comfort them and let his love and peace be with them in this time of loss and grief. Folks, we really need to pray so desperately for America for revival to sweep across the land, and that we will repent and turn from the wicknedness that we have allowed to enter into the land. A very beautiful innocent person has lost their live to the spirit and tragic senseless act of violance and murder, please let us have 2 Chronicles 7:14 on our hearts and in our minds as we pray effectively and earnestly without giving up or being weary in out constant praying for this Nation and for the nations around the world. To the Avina and Lopez family and friends of Ms. Perla, I want to say that may God bless you and keep you in this hour is my prayer to you and your families.” – D.K. Foreman

Comments more...

Repost: The hard lives — and high suicide rate — of Native American children on reservations

by on Oct.23, 2014, under Native American Community, Revival In America

By Sari Horwitz March 9 – Washington Post Article

SACATON, ARIZ. The tamarisk tree down the dirt road from Tyler Owens’s house is the one where the teenage girl who lived across the road hanged herself. Don’t climb it, don’t touch it, admonished Owens’s grandmother when Tyler, now 18, was younger.

There are other taboo markers around the Gila River Indian reservation — eight young people committed suicide here over the course of a single year.

Feb. 12, 2014 Richard Stone, left, and Tyler Owens stand near the tree where a Native American girl and her father both committed suicide in Sacaton, Ariz. Owens, who lives across the street from this tree, said: “In Indian Country, youths need to have somebody there for them. I wish I had been that somebody for the girl in the tamarisk tree.” Linda Davidson/The Washington Post

Feb. 12, 2014 Richard Stone, left, and Tyler Owens stand near the tree where a Native American girl and her father both committed suicide in Sacaton, Ariz. Owens, who lives across the street from this tree, said: “In Indian Country, youths need to have somebody there for them. I wish I had been that somebody for the girl in the tamarisk tree.” Linda Davidson/The Washington Post

“We’re not really open to conversation about suicide,” Owens said. “It’s kind of like a private matter, a sensitive topic. If a suicide happens, you’re there for the family. Then after that, it’s kind of just, like, left alone.”

But the silence that has shrouded suicide in Indian country is being pierced by growing alarm at the sheer number of young Native Americans taking their own lives — more than three times the national average, and up to 10 times on some reservations.

A toxic collection of pathologies — poverty, unemployment, domestic violence, sexual assault, alcoholism and drug addiction — has seeped into the lives of young people among the nation’s 566 tribes. Reversing their crushing hopelessness, Indian experts say, is one of the biggest challenges for these communities.

Feb. 10, 2014 Associate Attorney General Tony West, center, talks to youth council members Tyler Owens, left, and Richard Stone at the Gila River Indian reservation in Sacaton, Ariz. The Justice Department's task force hosted a roundtable asking select Native American young people what they needed to succeed.

Feb. 10, 2014 Associate Attorney General Tony West, center, talks to youth council members Tyler Owens, left, and Richard Stone at the Gila River Indian reservation in Sacaton, Ariz. The Justice Department’s task force hosted a roundtable asking select Native American young people what they needed to succeed.

“The circumstances are absolutely dire for Indian children,” said Theresa M. Pouley, the chief judge of the Tulalip Tribal Court in Washington state and a member of the Indian Law and Order Commission.

Pouley fluently recites statistics in a weary refrain: “One-quarter of Indian children live in poverty, versus 13 percent in the United States. They graduate high school at a rate 17 percent lower than the national average. Their substance-abuse rates are higher. They’re twice as likely as any other race to die before the age of 24. They have a 2.3 percent higher rate of exposure to trauma. They have two times the rate of abuse and neglect. Their experience with post-traumatic stress disorder rivals the rates of returning veterans from Afghanistan.”

In one of the broadest studies of its kind, the Justice Department recently created a national task force to examine the violence and its impact on American Indian and Alaska Native children, part of an effort to reduce the number of Native American youth in the criminal justice system. The level of suicide has startled some task force officials, who consider the epidemic another outcome of what they see as pervasive despair.

Last month, the task force held a hearing on the reservation of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community in Scottsdale. During their visit, Associate Attorney General Tony West, the third-highest-ranking Justice Department official, and task force members drove to Sacaton, about 30 miles south of Phoenix, and met with Owens and 14 other teenagers.

“How many of you know a young person who has taken their life?” the task force’s co-chairman asked. All 15 raised their hands.

“That floored me,” West said.

Feb. 10, 2014 Members of the youth council on the Gila River Indian reservation in Sacaton, Ariz. When the students were asked by a show of hands how many had family members who attended college, three raised their hand. When asked whether they knew anyone who had committed suicide, all 15 raised their hands. The Justice Department hosted a roundtable with the youth council asking select young people what they needed to succeed. Many of them responded that they needed someone to talk to; others said they needed college scholarships.

Feb. 10, 2014 Members of the youth council on the Gila River Indian reservation in Sacaton, Ariz. When the students were asked by a show of hands how many had family members who attended college, three raised their hand. When asked whether they knew anyone who had committed suicide, all 15 raised their hands. The Justice Department hosted a roundtable with the youth council asking select young people what they needed to succeed. Many of them responded that they needed someone to talk to; others said they needed college scholarships.

A ‘trail of broken promises’

There is an image that Byron Dorgan, co-chairman of the task force and a former senator from North Dakota, can’t get out of his head. On the Spirit Lake Nation in North Dakota years ago, a 14-year-old girl named Avis Little Wind hanged herself after lying in bed in a fetal position for 90 days. Her death followed the suicides of her father and sister.

“She lay in bed for all that time, and nobody, not even her school, missed her,” said Dorgan, a Democrat who chaired the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. “Eventually she got out of bed and killed herself. Avis Little Wind died of suicide because mental-health treatment wasn’t available on that reservation.”

Indian youth suicide cannot be looked at in a historical vacuum, Dorgan said. The agony on reservations is directly tied to a “trail of broken promises to American Indians,” he said, noting treaties dating back to the 19th century that guaranteed but largely didn’t deliver health care, education and housing.

When he retired after 30 years in Congress, Dorgan founded the Center for Native American Youth at the Aspen Institute to focus on problems facing young Indians, especially the high suicide rates.

“The children bear the brunt of the misery,” Dorgan said, adding that tribal leaders are working hard to overcome the challenges. “But there is no sense of urgency by our country to do anything about it.”

At the first hearing of the Justice Department task force, in Bismarck, N.D., in December, Sarah Kastelic, deputy director of the National Indian Child Welfare Association, used a phrase that comes up repeatedly in deliberations among experts: “historical trauma.”

Youth suicide was once virtually unheard of in Indian tribes. A system of child protection, sustained by tribal child-rearing practices and beliefs, flourished among Native Americans, and everyone in a community was responsible for the safeguarding of young people, Kastelic said.

“Child maltreatment was rarely a problem,” said Kastelic, a member of the native village of Ouzinkie in Alaska, “because of these traditional beliefs and a natural safety net.”

But these child-rearing practices were often lost as the federal government sought to assimilate native people and placed children — often against their parents’ wishes — in “boarding schools” that were designed to immerse Indian children in Euro-American culture.

In many cases, the schools, mostly located off reservations, were centers of widespread sexual, emotional and physical abuse. The transplantation of native children continued into the 1970s; there were 60,000 children in such schools in 1973 as the system was being wound down. They are the parents and grandparents of today’s teenagers.

Michelle Rivard-Parks, a University of North Dakota law professor who has spent 10 years working in Indian country as a prosecutor and tribal lawyer, said that the “aftermath of attempts to assimilate American and Alaska Natives remains ever present . . . and is visible in higher-than-average rates of suicide.”

The Justice Department task force is gathering data and will not offer its final recommendations to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. on ways to mitigate violence and suicide until this fall. For now, West, Dorgan and other members are listening to tribal leaders and experts at hearings on reservations around the country.

“We know that the road to involvement in the juvenile justice system is often paved by experiences of victimization and trauma,” West said. “We have a lot of work to do. There are too many young people in Indian country who don’t see a future for themselves, who have lost all hope.”

The testimony West is hearing is sometimes bitter, and witnesses often come forward with great reluctance.

“It’s tough coming forward when you’re a victim,” said Deborah Parker, 43, the vice chair of the Tulalip Tribes in Washington state. “You have to relive what happened. . . . A reservation is like a small town, and you can face a backlash.”

Parker didn’t talk about her sexual abuse as a child until two years ago, when she publicly told of being repeatedly raped when she “was the size of a couch cushion.”

Indian child-welfare experts say that the staggering number of rapes and sexual assaults of Native American women have had devastating effects on mothers and their children.

“A majority of our girls have struggled with sexual and domestic violence — not once but repeatedly,” said Parker, who has started a program to help young female survivors and try to prevent suicide. “One of my girls, Sophia, was murdered on my reservation by her partner. Another one of our young girls took her life.”

Stories of violence and abuse
Owens recalls how she used to climb the tamarisk tree with her cousin to look for the nests of mourning doves and pigeons — until the suicide of the 16-year-old girl. The next year, the girl’s distraught father hanged himself in the same tree.

“He was devastated and he was drinking, and he hung himself too,” Owens said.

She and a good friend, Richard Stone, recently talked about their broken families and their own histories with violence. When Owens was younger, her uncle physically abused her until her mother got a restraining order. Stone, 17, was beaten by his alcoholic mother.

“My mother hit me with anything she could find,” Stone said. “A TV antenna, a belt, the wooden end of a shovel.”

Social workers finally removed him and his brothers and sister from their home, and he was placed in a group home and then a foster home.

Both Owens and Stone dream about leaving “the rez.” Owens hopes to get an internship in Washington and have a career as a politician; Stone wants to someday be a counselor or a psychiatrist.

Owens sometimes rides her bike out into the alfalfa and cotton fields near Sacaton, the tiny town named after the coarse grasses that once grew on the Sonoran Desert land belonging to the Akimel O’Odham and Pee Posh tribes. She and her friends sing a peaceful, healing song she learned from the elders about a bluebird who flies west at night, blessing the sun and bringing on the moon and stars.

One recent evening, as the sun dipped below the Sierra Estrella mountains, the two made their way to Owens’s backyard. They climbed onto her trampoline and began jumping in the moonlight, giggling like teenagers anywhere in America.

But later this month on the reservation, they will take on an adult task. Owens, Stone and a group of other teenagers here will begin a two-day course on suicide prevention. A hospital intervention trainer will engage them in role-playing and teach them how to spot the danger signs.

“In Indian country, youths need to have somebody there for them,” Owens said. “I wish I had been that somebody for the girl in the tamarisk tree.”

We must pray continually for our Native American Indian brothers and sisters and their families and children. Praying for their salvation and for the revival to fall upon the reservations and within their communities. This is something that was touched upon in the Gathering of Eagles Prayer Conference in Washington DC this month. Pray that we will be able to reach out in love to our dear brothers and sisters and be a light and encouragement to them always. Continue to prayer for the young generation of Native Americans, those such as Tyler Owens and Richard Stone who will rise up as a generation seeking the Lord in all all truth and love in the spirit of Christ. – D.K. Foreman

“The are not savages without souls. They are people. They have dreams and aspirations
and a desire for identity deep down inside that most bury where their hope has been
buried, in the grave of hopelessness.
Few people can understand what we have done to these precious people that God
loves.

The Indian’s life expectancy is about 65% of the white man’s in the same country. Why?
Drugs, alcohol, and murders are the three major reasons. If that’s as far as you look, it
looks like it’s their problem. Look further. What are the reasons for the above? Grief is
number one. Yes grief, and for several reasons. For two hundred years, generation
upon generation has known the slavery of dehumanization, mothers being separated
from their babies, children growing up never knowing their fathers. One of the greatest
cultural problems among them is the now seemingly inherent inability to bond,
something only Jesus can restore. Break down the family, and you break down the
nation. They are in short, grieving the loss of dignity, identity, love, and hope. In
grieving, they have become bitter and self-destructive. It can be likened to the picture of
an abused child becoming an abusive adult.”
– Nita Johnson concerning the Native American people in her book Prepare for the Winds of Change

Comments more...

Day 22 Prayer – October 22, 2014

by on Oct.22, 2014, under Uncategorized

This morning I was in my prayer time and the lord showed me a vision concerning a dear friend of mines who I went to school with. He showed me that I knighted her with the word of God, in the same manner that the soldiers were initiated as knights for the King. I had the my bible which transformed into a sword that glowed and on the written on the sword was the Word of the Lord and I spoke to my friend in the vision and said “By the authority of the word of God, I herby knight you to go forth strong in the word of the Lord that is applied to your heart, and to reach the lost and those who are weary in the battle to bring them in and protect those in the kingdom of God.” I begin to see God’s word light a light surrounding her and everywhere she went whether the marketplace or across town she ministered to people with the Word of God.

I have been praying for my dear friend and her soon-to-be husband, that God will strengthen their marriage and that they will be unified in one accord with everything that they set out to do for the work of the Lord. I have watched her tremendous change in her life and I just want to say to you my friend keep on running the race for the Lord, don’t let nothing discourage or upset the peace and love you have in Christ Jesus. If you need to pray I’m always a phone call away. I stand upon the promises of Matthew 18:19

“”I also tell you this: If two of you agree here on earth concerning anything you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you.”

Comments more...

In Memoriam: Misty Anne Upham (1982-2014)

by on Oct.17, 2014, under Native American Community

AUBURN, Wash. — The body found in a ravine in Auburn Thursday has been confirmed to be missing Native American actress Misty Upham, the King County Medical Examiner reported Friday.

Upham died on Oct. 5, but the cause and manner of death are still pending, the examiner said.

Officers responded to the scene, in a ravine alongside the White River, at about 1 p.m. Thursday after receiving a report of a body near the river. The body then was tentatively identified as Upham, 32, who has been missing for more than a week, said Cmdr. Steve Stocker of the Auburm police. Police found a purse with Upham’s information nearby.

Upham starred in the movie adaption of “August: Osage County,” in which she portrayed Johnna, the caregiver to Meryl Streep’s character in the 2013 movie. Upham also appeared in “Django Unchained” and was featured in the acclaimed 2008 movie “Frozen River,” opposite Melissa Leo.

A family friend found the body while a group of friends and family were searching in the area. Upham is a member of the Blackfeet tribe and was in Washington state to help care for a family member.

The acclaimed actress was last seen walking away from her sister’s apartment on the Muckleshoot reservation near Auburn on Oct. 5 and was reported missing by her family on Oct. 6.

Police had responded to suicide calls several times in the past year at the same apartment, Stocker said, and Upham’s parents have told police she had been on medications for mental health issues.

Misty Upham (1982 - 2014)

Misty Upham (1982 – 2014)

Stay Tuned for my Commentary on Misty Upham.

Comments more...

Looking for something?

Use the form below to search the site:

Still not finding what you're looking for? Drop a comment on a post or contact us so we can take care of it!