Burned alive

I am writing this story to share with you the dangers of living with anyone who you know or suspect is involved in illegal activities. It could cost you your life.

About 6 years ago, my son met a girl on Tinder and the two became very fond of each other. My son was a catch and any woman would be lucky to have him.

We raised him well and were told that by whoever had the privilege of meeting him. He opened doors for women, walked on the outside side of the path, pulled out the chair, never cursed while women were present – a proper gentleman in every sense of the word.

He was well educated and an avid traveller, so he got to experience as much of the world as he possibly could in his short life.

The girl he met was called Selena and Travis was crazy about her. They were very close and soon she became part of all our family gatherings and trips.

Eventually, Travis and Selena left our nest, sadly, and moved in together but we were happy for them as our son is moving onto the next chapter of his life with someone he dearly loved.

Fast-forward 3 years, Selena was pregnant with their daughter, Ruby. Travis was very excited and she was due to be born soon. Travis and Selena had no plans to marry right away but the two were a team in life, much like my husband and me – and we knew that no marriage certificate would concrete their relationship any more than they had.

With a baby on the way, Travis was becoming concerned with the baby’s exposure to Selena’s mother. We didn’t know the exact details but her mother was involved in dealing drugs and Travis wanted his partner to separate herself from that.

As close as Travis was to us, Selena was very close to her mother so they argued about this several times but he was relentless on not letting this go. He wanted to his give his daughter the best chance in life and he was worried that his grandmother’s profession would not be appropriate, nor did he want his partner to be involved in illegal activities.

Travis started spending some nights at our place after they fought but never gave too much away to us. We were worried about him but he assured us he had it under control.

Months later, Ruby was born and this seemed to have quelled any tensions between Travis and Selena or so we thought. Over the 12 months we never heard anything again about Travis’ concerns about Selena’s mother and when we hinted at it, he brushed it off any concerns.

It was coming up to Ruby’s first birthday. Travis and his father went out and bought a trampoline for her first birthday, one of those ones that were enclosed within a net so she could jump around and the two were meant to build it the following day.

Travis told him that he’ll call to double-check if it’s still okay for his father to come over and help out but he never called.

We tried calling him but the phone went unanswered.

We called Selena. She didn’t answer. We called them both but neither of them answered. As we were close, we knew that he hadn’t made any plans to go away as Australia has many rural places that does not have phone reception.

My husband and I drove over to their place but his car wasn’t in the driveway. We could also see that his car wasn’t in the carport but Selena’s was so we knocked on the door. We were greeted by Selena who said that she hadn’t seen Travis.

She didn’t seem concerned at the slightest but she was preoccupied by Ruby who was understandably a handful and was crying a lot. We were going to offer to help but Selena’s mother appeared behind her at the door and told us that she’s got it covered, so we should go home.

We left more confused than ever. We became extremely concerned for Travis now as the thought of Selena’s mother being involved with drug dealing, so once we arrived home we called the police.

The missing person’s report was filed and the police started searching for Travis.

A few days later, we received a knock on the door from police in the morning as we were having coffee in our dining room, getting ready to drive around and look for Travis.

The police believe they may have found his car and wanted us to inspect the scene with them. We obliged and went with police to the site.

About 5 minutes away from where Travis and Selena lived in a new-build estate where a bunch of vacant plots were laid a sedan burnt to a crisp. The windows were gone and the metal had melted leaving a brown and black out tone.

The police were investigating the car and others were searching the area in hopes that they could find our son. Rescue volunteers and air support searched the surrounding areas while police detectives inspected the car and gathered evidence.

We stood with the police officers who brought us there as web explained what are the car would have looked like and to confirm Travis’ car. Sadly it was our sons car.

A police officer opened the boot lid. He paused for a moment before calling another officer over. We didn’t notice at first but other officers gathered and we were guided back to the car we arrived in.

I suddenly began to worry as did my husband. The police has found something that they didn’t want us to see. But we just knew what they had found.

It was our Travis. We didn’t want to believe it as it was the most unimaginable way to lose your life, especially our pride and joy and the centre of our universe, but we had to come to terms with how our Travis died.

Our son had died in the most horrifying way possible – alive and locked in the back of his car while he burned to death.

As we were returned home by police, we both broke down in years while police tried to console us. The truth is we were inconsolable and could not fathom the circumstances of Travis’ death.

That wasn’t the only loss we suffered that week. A few days later, we also lost our granddaughter’s mother, Selena. The police arrested her and sentenced her to life after she was charged as the primary suspect in Travis’ death.

Selena was upset that Travis did not want her mother in Ruby’s life as she was involved in dealing drugs, so he was going to report her to police. Selena and her mother hired two men to kill and silence our son.

All of them are in jail now and are serving 21 years each. But nothing will bring back our son.

Ruby is the closest thing we have to him now and we are her legal guardians now.

This story made the news on several news shows and websites in Australia but I wanted to share my personal experience with you.

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