Ozarks author shares story of domestic violence survival

Published: Nov. 11, 2020 at 9:37 PM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Domestic abuse continues to be a major problem in the Ozarks.

This week a Greene County man was charged with second-degree murder, accused of beating his girlfriend to death.

A domestic abuse survivor and local author is sharing her story in hopes of helping someone in need.

“I knew I was going to die,” Shari Lueck.

She recalls the moment that gave her the courage to prosecute her ex-husband.

“I started to black out. I went to take my last breath and I was like, okay, this is how I die. I can’t believe this is how I’m going to die. I can see everything right now,” she explained. “My daughter came home from school and her keys were jingling in the door. He ran out the same way he came in and left. That’s the only reason I’m alive.”

She says she tried to leave her abuser sooner.

“If I would have had more information or even come across somebody that was like me I think I would have gotten help to get out,” said Lueck.

“You are not alone. It was not okay. We believe you,” said Executive Director of The Victim Center, Brandi Bartel.

Many resources in Springfield, including the Victim Center, offers help to people living in all types of violent situations. Often times at little to no cost.

“We can help them create a safety plan, get access to shelter or other resources that they might need. Perhaps they need some medical treatment in the hospital setting. Ultimately we want to walk with them along that journey from victim to survivor,” she said.

Lueck says her experience has compelled her to help, to be the advocate she wished she had sooner.

She said, “I didn’t have the courage. That’s why we hear these stories. You say, why do you need to speak out Sheri, because, holy cow what is that?”

It’s why she says she wrote her book and works with local organizations striving to end the violence.

“I feel strongly about people being safe. We need to share our voices. Our stories are our medicine. You never know whose story is going to save somebody else’s life,” said Lueck.

For help at any time call 417-846-7233 or 800-831-6863.

Women’s Funding Network, based in San Francisco, launched a signal for help program geared to be a lifeline for abuse victims. You can find more information here.

For additional information and resources in Springfield click on the links below:

The Victim Center

Harmony House

Shari Leuck

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