May 29, 2006


By Meri, Aruban Boycott Blogger

It's a year since Natalee Holloway disappeared from an Island in the Caribbean. A year since her family last spoke to her or heard her laughter. A year since all of her hopes and dreams were ended. A year that will NOT be marked in any special way by her Mother because every day is a day of remembrance and pain for both Beth and Dave.

I spent yesterday reading the various blogs and message boards on the Internet that concern Natalee and I went over all of the alerts that I have received from Google regarding Natalee's disappearance and the futile search for her this past 12 months. I read the opinions and the comments; the good and the bad.

First, ALL roads lead back to Joran van der Sloot. No matter what is said or who is arrested, they all lead back to Joran and his actions both on the night that Natalee was last seen alive and his subsequent lies and inconsistencies in each and every statement that he has made. I took notes when Greta Van Susteren interviewed him and when Chris Cuomo interviewed him and I re-read the police statements that I have in my possession and I came up with over 20 pages of lies and inconsistencies.

This isn't about Joran though, it's about Natalee, so I will focus on what was lost and what may never be found. A bright, smiling, intelligent girl with hopes and dreams and a family who loves her vanished off of the face of the earth.

If it is true that one person's death diminishes us all than Natalee is a perfect example of that saying. So many people have worked tirelessly to try to find Natalee. So many have contributed in some way to find answers as to what happened to her and where she might be. So many of us believe that we know what happened in a general sense and we know why the truth will never be told. That makes it even more difficult to write about this case and to move forward in our search for the truth.

There are far better writers than I am who submit various pieces to web sites and I read them every day. There are people much closer to Natalee than I was or ever will be who I have listened to and yet I feel compelled to continue my search for answers. I can't even give you a solid reason for my interest other than the usual ones about justice, compassion and empathy for Natalee's parents. I can tell you that somewhere in my heart something was touched by Natalee Holloway and by her parents.

Their grief is a part of it and the way that they have been treated by the Aruban authorities is another. The unkind words and pictures on the hate sites push me forward as well, so I guess if you put all of that together there is a reasonable explanation for my continued interest in finding out what happened to Natalee last May.

I think that most of all, I simply have come to know Natalee and her family in a unique and special way that I never anticipated prior to ever hearing her name a year ago. She is my daughter, my She could be anyone and everyone and she has come to symbolize that for me. Her mother could be me, my mom, my daughter-in-law, my friends and her dad could be my dad, my husband, my friends. Natalee and her parents, very simply put, are ALL of us and that's why we can't give up on her.

Today we remember fallen heroes who fought for our country and for our freedom and that is something separate and apart from the remembrance I will feel for this lovely girl from Alabama.

She was not a hero nor a warrior and she didn't set out to defend America. She did become a symbol nevertheless of what America stands for and that is to care about, protect and defend our neighbors and to stand by our fellow citizens in time of suffering. Natalee brought out the best in some of us and her parents showed us the path to courage.

Today I will thank our fallen heroes and remember them. Tomorrow I will thank Beth and Dave for showing me what real courage is all about and I will remember their daughter...our daughter..our sister....our friend... our neighbor........Natalee.


dennisintn said...

you have voiced the thoughts of thousands of us across america and the world. keep up the good work.

Carpe Noctem said...

what a beautiful piece, & so true! nice.

Anonymous said...

Beautifully written Meri. How anybody can completely destroy such a beautiful human being just for a short burst of instant gratification defies the concept of being part of the human race.

Anonymous said...

Dear Meri,

Once again, a beautiful post. One thing is so very clear after reading your posts, Meri, and that is that Natalee Holloway has a true friend in YOU!
It is so painfully difficult to witness the depths of hatred powered by greed and corruption that fuel this cruel injustice done to Natalee and her family.
But each time you write, Meri, you are putting a face and a name to the ONE whom they prefer to never even call by her name. Each time you write about her promising future, her hopes and her dreams, each time you write about the cowardly acts of Aruban officials whose arrogance and dispicable deviousness went so far - as to have a father, in the throws of trauma over the loss of his daughter digging thru a garbage dump...each time that you tell Natalee's story, you are owning your power of the pen to raise your voice in claiming this child's freedom. And that Meri, is something that makes those cowards VERY afraid of you, of Deetch, and of anyone with a conscience who speaks out in standing up for this family in their sorrow. Your call for Americans to unite behind this family is something I too feel so deeply. And I truly believe, that all across America, we can and we WILL be awakened to WHY the story of Natalee Holloway is EVERYONE'S concern. You are so correct in reminding us again as to WHO Natalee Holloway truly is! And no one should make any mistake about this, for she is EVERYONE'S DAUGHTER, she is EVERYONE'S CHILD, she is EVERYONE'S SISTER, NEICE, and FRIEND. And her NAME WILL NOT BE SILENCED. HER NAME WILL NOT BE DRIVEN INTO THE ARUBAN VANISHING HOLE OF HELL. This child will not be abandoned. And so long as we all stay focused, Meri, with our eyes on the truth, and on Natalee, I truly believe we will bring her home. Don't let those who would love to distract you from your focus...and draw you into the depths of their venomous hell every distract you, Meri. You are a good, honest, passionate writer! You give a face and a name to Natalee...and your courage inspires me to write! So, please keep on writing Meri. Natalee is so fortunate to have such a friend in you and in Deetch. As for me, my writing is not up to Deetch standards of quality, nor could I ever come close to you...but by golly I WILL TRY. Thank you Meri, thank you for making the time to care about another mother's child. Thank you for giving of yourself in standing up for a child who is all alone and who has no one by her side. Our voices will become this child's voice, and our words will ring out her name across America until she comes home.

Anonymous said...

Natalee is National and Historic. She has uncovered Joran as a suspected Dutch Nazi spy in Aruba. How can Joran slip in and out of New York City so easily? He could have stolen all our MSM user identities from the Time Square. Joran is a sex predator threat to our national security. We would like our new CIA chief and air force general to hunt him down. Joran is such a high profile criminal and professional liar, his operatives have been going on between Holland and Aruba, under the auspices of the Dutch judge Smid who might be a spy agency chief from a Middle East extremists country. Remember, Aruba is a hellhole island of drugs and liars. They will kill you and do away with your body. No Trace, No Evidence.

Anonymous said...

Your heart is definitely in the right place. I love your blog and your writing. Keep it up.

Natalee needs you.

Anonymous said...

Joran once said "Let God be the Judge". Now you have it, Joran. After one year in hiding, you can't just walk away, Joran. The New York Supreme Court Justice will judge you today.

Anonymous said...

Tonight, Tuesday at 10pm. Rita Crosby will be doing a big thing on the Holloway case. Tune in.

Anonymous said...

Yeh? why dont you also thank the people of Aruba and commerce and hotels, that did everything for Beth, Dave, Jug, and everyone else, to try and find Natalee. This was not for a day or week, but for months. All the searches, money etc, that that little rinky dink island put into finding Natalee. And all for what?, so people like you can bash, denegrate, destroy, boycott, offend them. Why dont you and everyone else for once in you ignorant life admit that. I think that would make you a better person then what you are today.

dennisintn said...

the island of aruba promoted and continues to promote itself as safe.
officials were aware of activities taking place daily that were not safe.
an l8 yr. old girl disappeared under suspicious circumstances and officials have and are continuing to protect several individuals suspected of harming this girl.
officials and business people on the island have demeaned the reputation of both the victim and her family in order to protect the suspects.
the island of aruba deserves what it is getting. and will continue getting what it deserves until justice is done and natalee is returned to her home.

Anonymous said...

That was a very heart touching piece. You really have a way with words and it shows in your work. All your articles are beautifully written and so very heart touching. Today is a sad day for us all...especially the Holloway/Twitty families...Natalee has touched so many lives and we all feel she is part of our families now. Please continue to write for fight for Natalee and to always remember.
We are all thinking of you Natalee. You are Americas daughter and we fight for what we believe in! Thank you Meri for penning the words so many of us are at a loss for.
God BLess Nat and her family.