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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The other side of the story to Dead Man Walking
If you have read Dead Man Walking, you really MUST read this book also! It is the other side of the story. Please consider reading it.

This book is written by the victim Debbie Morris. She takes you through her life (before and after the crime) and how she went on after being the victim of such a horrific ordeal. She ultimately found peace by forgiving Robert...
Published on December 8, 2004 by R. Martin

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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars To Forgive But Not Forget.
As a sixteen year old victim of rape, torture, and attempted murder by Robert Willie in Louisiana, Debbie Ceuvas survived the brutality this killer used to subdue her during the kidnapping. After fifteen years of remembering the nightmarish ordeal, she was able to overcome the trauma and start speaking out.

Her appearance on the t.v. show, 'Frontline,' to tell...
Published on December 10, 2004 by Betty Burks


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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The other side of the story to Dead Man Walking, December 8, 2004
By 
R. Martin "boblaura9" (Mauldin, sc United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Forgiving the Dead Man Walking: Only One Woman Can Tell the Entire Story (Paperback)
If you have read Dead Man Walking, you really MUST read this book also! It is the other side of the story. Please consider reading it.

This book is written by the victim Debbie Morris. She takes you through her life (before and after the crime) and how she went on after being the victim of such a horrific ordeal. She ultimately found peace by forgiving Robert Willie. The parents of another girl that had been victimized and murdered by Robert Willie were the opposite of forgiving - they were filled with rage, hate and bitterness. The contrast between Debbie's response and their response really stood out to me. Debbie found peace and they did not...

This book also gives a different perspective on Robert Willie than the one given by Sister Helen Prejean in Dead Man Walking. Debbie portrays Willie as being the one in control. He was domineering, the leader, and heavily influenced his partner in crime Joe Vaccaro. In Prejean's book, Willie is portrayed rather the opposite!! (Should we be surprised that someone on deathrow might not honestly describe themselves?)

Overall, this is a well-written book about the power of a forgiving spirit. Please consider reading it to get both sides of the story of Dead Man Walking.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars To Forgive But Not Forget., December 10, 2004
As a sixteen year old victim of rape, torture, and attempted murder by Robert Willie in Louisiana, Debbie Ceuvas survived the brutality this killer used to subdue her during the kidnapping. After fifteen years of remembering the nightmarish ordeal, she was able to overcome the trauma and start speaking out.

Her appearance on the t.v. show, 'Frontline,' to tell what really happened to her as opposed to Hollywood's version of 'Dead Man Walking' proved a pivotal point in her recovery. It served as a turning point whereby she was invited to speak at conferences where other participants had endured their own form of confinement and torture.

At the Cleveland, Ohio, conference in 1997, titled "Forgiveness in a Violent Society,' she shared the platform with Beirut hostage Terry Anderson. At seminars directed by Terry Hargrave, a therapist and psychology professor from Amarillo, Texas, she learned the steps to inner healing through forgiveness: insight, understanding, remorse, compensation for past hurts, through two areas, salvage and restoration.

Though she was never mentioned in the film, her testimony led to Willie's conviction. In FORGIVE AND FORGET by Lewis Smedes, she found the section, "Forgiving Monsters" relevant to her experience. Refusing to forgive meant submerging the pain, shame, and self-pity.

Forgiveness seems so hard and you wonder, "Is it really worth it?" She learned that by forgiving that human monster, she was able to trust again -- to experience the giving and receiving of love. She married Conner Morris and is now a mother.

She writes, "People often ask how I feel about the death penalty now?" Her response: "Justice didn't do a thing to heal me. Forgiveness did." I've always been opposed to the death penalty due to the fact that so many 'criminals' on death row are there through revenge and lies.

This is the previously untold other half of "Dead Man Walking,' the movie starring Sean Penn, which depicted the death row relationship he had with spiritual advisor, Helen Prejean, author of the book, DEAD MAN WALKING. Sister Helen, though she tried to save the life of a killer, admires Debbie's refreshing honesty as she dealt with the 'traumatic aftershock and the long, painful road to become whole again.' This true story of the young woman whose testimony sent Willie to the electric chair is one of courage, faith, and forgiveness.

This book is Debbie's "walk" on an incredible journey which was life-changing. THE DAILY VARIETY describes her as 'a woman who is Prejean's equal in strength and virtue.' We are asked to contemplate, "Is there any crime, any hurt, any person beyond the power of forgiveness."
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Inspiring Story : An Incredible Woman, December 4, 1999
By A Customer
I just recently returned from a convention of youth workers where Debbie Morris was one of our General Session speakers. To hear her story, then read it, is a powerful experience. When she spoke, there were close to 5,000 people in an exhibition hall which served as our main staging location -- as she spoke, you could have heard a feather drop in the room. Whether hearing Debbie speak, or reading her book, issues surrounding forgiveness are almost sure to surface. Please read this book for yourself, and for those in your life who need to hear this message of the power of forgivness.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars forgiveness at it's best...and hardest, February 18, 2000
By 
Sarah Sypkes (Melbourne, Australia) - See all my reviews
i thought this was one of the most honest, vulnerable stories i have read. the author, debbie morris, has a faith that was tested beyond belief. her account of the traumatic events in her life at the age of 16 open the reader completely to her world. though written from a reflective point of view, it is written so that i felt like i was experiencing it with her, though i realize i hardly have the right to think that.
anyone who wants to better understand or relate to a friend who is going through similar trauma should read this without a doubt. she is brave and would inspire anyone in facing reality and finding real forgiveness, within themself, and for the offender.
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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1st hand truth, July 11, 2005
By 
Cori "Rapunzel's sissors" (Deep South - United States) - See all my reviews
I remember this crime all too well. My cousin (Mark) was Debbie's boyfriend. I was only 9 at the time, but I remember the frantic phone call from my aunt and my dad joining other members of our family as they drove through town looking for Debbie and Mark. I will never forget overhearing the details of the wake of horror that Robert Willie left behind.

Debbie's book is full of courage, honor, and forgiveness. If should be in every victim assistance program and every victim of crime should read it. If you've read Dead Man Walking, you owe it to yourself to read this as well as Mike Varnado's book (he was the investigator who found Faith Hathaway's body). Helen Prejean cannot tell you about the "real" Robert Willie... only his survivor can.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful book about forgiveness, October 27, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Forgiving the Dead Man Walking: Only One Woman Can Tell the Entire Story (Paperback)
My sister gave me this book, and I found it to be one of the best books on a person personal journey from being victimized to forgiving the victimizer. It portrayed what Biblical forgiveness really means-it isn't saying what the victimizer did was okay, or that you have to be best friends with him, it simply means that you no longer hold anger in your heart, and will not let what happen to you grow to bitterness. Her journey wasn't easy, but her words were very genuine. I think this book is a great lesson in forgiveness to anyone, but I think any woman or man who has been the victim of a brutal crime should read this book.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb story from a teen abducted by two rapist-murderers, January 8, 2006
This review is from: Forgiving the Dead Man Walking: Only One Woman Can Tell the Entire Story (Paperback)
It's hard to find enough words of praise for this book. Two vicious killers escape from jail and chance on a 16-year-old Christian girl talking with her boyfriend in his car in a small town in Louisiana. The escaped prisoners abduct them at gunpoint and head for Florida. They shoot the boyfriend on the way and leave him for dead on a fire ants' nest. They keep the girl with them, and rape her whenever they feel like it. She finds out they raped and killed at least one other young woman before her.

Debbie Morris survived this terrible ordeal and her testimony put the abductors back in jail. Later she found that a nun had befriended the main killer, Robert Willie, and he was now becoming something of a celebrity, even while headed for the electric chair.

It would have been easy to produce a book that was full of bitterness at the legal system, at the world, and at God. But this book doesn't do that. It is gripping yet sensitive, informative yet reserved, and as forgiving as it is powerful. What I like most about it is that the writers (professional writer Gregg Lewis put it together for Debbie Morris) know exactly when to give details and when to restrain them. For example, many writers would play up the rapes for their sensationalism, but in this book Debbie Morris says "he raped me" and leaves it at that.

This is factual writing at its best. I found it hard to put the book down. And it moved me more than books usually do. I cannot find a thing wrong with it to give it less than a five-star rating.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Amazing Story, May 31, 2000
This book was brilliantly written.Debbie Morris entered into my heart, with her remarkable story of courage and faith. She is a very couragous women for sharing her long journey during her traumatic experiences as she was kidnapped and rapped and her life afterward. She expressed her honest emotions of fear, and loss of dignity. She also succeeds to share how she takes her life back, with her faith. This was a very moving story witch deeply touched souls of not only one, but many readers.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Are you for or against the death penalty? Read this!, August 23, 1998
By A Customer
If you saw the movie, "Dead Man Walking," please read this, the true story written by the only person alive who can give it real meaning. Debbie Morris is a woman of courage and integrity. The word "victim" is not in her vocabulary. She lived the horror. Now she lives to tell us all the truth. As her husband's uncle, and a writer myself, I am proud to hail her work as both profoud and truly insightful. Forgiveness is the only way.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful Book, September 4, 2003
I originally saw this book in a discount bookstore during summer 2002. I was curious and eventually red the inside flap and back cover. I was intrigued by just that much alone. Then about a year later, I finally ordered me a used copy through a private seller on Amazon. My only regret is that I didn't order this book sooner.
Debbie (Cuevas) Morris was abducted by Robert Willie and his friend. In addition, she was raped 3 times while in thier hands. Her testimony eventually lead to his death sentance, due to some previous murders he committed.
Most of what was said or reported prior to this book focused on Willie, his crimes, and his eventual execution. All too often the law enforcement officials, with help from the media, are so busy tracking down a criminal that people forget all about the victims left in their wake. I do agree that we should go after the criminals and bring them to justice. But what about those affected by their crimes?
Debbie Morris tells the whole thing from start to finish. But don't be mislead. This isn't just a true-crime book. Debbie also tells of the long and painful journey back that she had to make. She had to re-examine herself, her beliefs about criminals and the death sentence, and ultimately about her anger towards God.
Perhaps the best part about this book is how Debbie Morris tells how she came to terms with Biblical forgiveness. Everyone in the world could certainly learn many lessons on just this alone. I say this because unforgiveness will eat you alive. Debbie stresses this point too, because she said that she was still unhappy even after Rober Wille was executed. As she states in the book, justice doesn't automatically bring about forgiveness. Sure, justice should happen. But we still have to have God's help in forgiving others. Justice in and of itslef will not make us happy and live a peaceful life inside.
To Debbie Morris-thank you for writing this book. I think that your book should be a must reading for all Christians. And thank you for your strong Christian faith. To God be the glory!
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Forgiving the Dead Man Walking: Only One Woman Can Tell the Entire Story
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