Vigil for slain mother: Family makes plea for other women in danger

Tuesday night, family and friends of a mother of three, April Russell, came together for an emotional vigil -- after she was shot and killed Monday by her ex. Now, her family is making an emotional plea for those in abusive relationships.

SAN ANTONIO - Tuesday night, family and friends of  April Russell, came together for an emotional vigil after the mother of three was shot and killed Monday on the city's east side by her ex.

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Her estranged husband and alleged murderer was killed by DPS troopers Monday afternoon in Gonzales County. 

Now, her family is making an emotional plea for those in abusive relationships.

They are also doing what they can to help Russell’s children, who she left behind. They are 15, 8, and 1-years-old.

Cyrus Russell asked for one thing from everyone at the vigil Tuesday night.

“Call those kids, pick those kids up when you can, they are going through it... we're going through it, but we're going through it more," Cyrus said.

His nieces and nephew will suffer the consequences of domestic violence for the rest of their lives.

Russell’s other brother, Quincy Russell, said while he can't bring her back. He hopes his sister's story will save the lives of other women.

“We just want to let people know that there is an out, you can get away from domestic violence, you can leave the situation, you can flee your abuser,” Quincy said.

Quincy said his sister is proof.

“Anything is possible with someone who wants to dominate you, control you, who is verbally abusing you,” Quincy said.

KENS 5 spoke with Marta Prada Pelaez, president of Family Violence Prevention Services, about how common this issue is.

“As horrendous as the whole story is… it is way too common. It is unfortunate but it is way too common,” Prada said. “We have the victim dead, the perpetrator dead, and the children.. that are left behind, severely traumatized. That is the picture of generational domestic violence.”

Tuesday night, three candles were lit for April's children, who are now in the custody of the State.

KENS 5 reached out to Child Protective Services Tuesday. A spokesperson told us the children were taken away as protocol until they investigate the situation. Ultimately, a judge will decide what happens with the kids. Of course, the family is hopeful they will be returned to them.

If you or anyone you know needs help, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. 

© 2017 KENS-TV


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