My mom recently sat me down and told me the truth about my childhood friend. Can you help me research her story?

My mom recently sat me down and told me the truth about my childhood friend. Can you help me research her story?

When I was four or five years old, there was a girl in my class who had very few friends. My mom always told me to try to make friends with everyone at school, so one day I walked up to her and and asked her if we could be friends. I would play with her on the swings, and sit next to her during class. I remember her being very shy, but a great friend. I had so much fun playing with her, and we would make believe about swinging all the way out into outer space - we even made up a song. One day, suddenly, she stopped coming to school - our teachers told us she moved away to another state. I was sad to know I couldn't see her anymore, but I accepted that she had left.

Recently, while talking nostalgically about the past, my mom was able to tell me the truth about what happened to my friend.

Her name was Olivia, though we both cannot remember her last name. She attended Dallas International School, and was in the same class as me in pre-K (this must have been circa 1996-1997). I couldn't remember this, but my mom told me that Olivia always came to school in tattered clothing, looking very unkempt. My mom remembers that, when attending birthday parties, her mother would drop her off and only pick up her daughter many hours after the party had ended and all the other children had been picked up. These were little things that the other parents noticed, but that could very easily be concluded as an unfortunate financial situation where the mom worked, and therefore could not pick up her child on time.

However, one morning my mom was watching the morning news, and she was shocked to find out that Olivia's mother had murdered her children/family, and then killed herself.

Reddit, I know that this happened over a decade ago, but it still deeply, deeply saddens me to find out that my friend died. I tried to research her story online, but I figure there must not be very many reports from the 90's. Also, because these are only my mom's memories, we cannot remember how she killed her children, how many children she had, etc. I know this is an extremely long shot, given how little information there is to work from, but I wanted to try my best to pay my respects to Olivia after all these years. If you could help in any way to figure out what her story is, I would be incredibly grateful!

** EDIT **: Reddit, I cannot thank you enough - within fifteen minutes of posting, Olivia and her story were found thanks to jacques45 and a few other posters several moments later. You have proven to me once again that this is a truly wonderful community, and I am very grateful! I am not sure where to go from here - I feel as though I am mourning a loss many, many years after the fact - though I know I can finally rest knowing that she will never be forgotten. Once again Reddit - thank you!

** EDIT 2 **: 2 hours and this thread has reached the front page of Reddit. I am overwhelmed with emotion, and am so happy that Olivia and her story have incited such a response from this community that never ceases to amaze me. I apologize for my lack of replies - I broke down after reading her story and have sought some immediate solace in the company of very close friends who have made this easier to bear. I will get back to as many of you as I possibly can. Once again Reddit, you are all truly amazing - never forget it!

Jane Hopkins in 1997. Sorry for your loss, even/especially if you weren't aware of it at the time.

University Park, TX -- Aug. 2, 1997 -- The discovery of a half dozen suicide notes and the murder weapon has convinced police in this upscale Dallas suburb that Emily Jane Hopkins slashed her children's throats and then her own.

The bodies of Ms. Hopkins, 41, her 6-year-old daughter Olivia and her 9-year-old son Clayton were found July 30, by her ex-husband of five years, Clayton Elliott Jr. Elliott told police he was planning to visit the children, when he walked in on the gruesome scene and called 911.

"My son has been murdered. My son has been murdered," Elliott told police dispatcher Cathy Marr. "My ex-wife and daughter are missing."

Crying, he described finding his son, who he said was stabbed after a struggle. "He is not breathing. He is cold. I can't believe it," Elliott cried as the dispatcher tried to console him.

The homicides are the first this year in University Park, which averages about one every three years, police Chief Bob Dixon said.

"It is such a tragedy for everyone ... the family, the husband," Dixon said. "We haven't seen anything like this in a long time, if ever."

The Dallas County medical examiner's office released a report ruling the deaths a double murder-suicide caused by "multiple sharp-force injuries."

Ms. Hopkins' brother-in-law, Raymond Byrd of Dallas, said he could not speculate on her motive. Ms. Hopkins and Elliott had a cordial relationship, he said.

"I know that she has had psychological counseling. I don't know what her issues were," Byrd said. "I can't begin to get inside of her mind and know what she is feeling."

"The act is totally, completely insane."

Ms. Hopkins and her daughter were in an upstairs bathroom tub with the water running. The shower door was removed from its hinges to hold the bathroom door closed. The boy was in the kitchen.

Police said it seemed improbable that someone would barricade the door from the inside and then leave. Officers also found notes Dixon described as "philosophical" scattered throughout the house and a kitchen knife they believe to be the murder weapon.

"They are angels. pray for us. forgive me," read one note that was attached to a wall.

"Everything we have indicates a suicide," Dixon said.

Ms. Hopkins, who comes from a prominent family in Van Buren, Ark., had moved to University Park about a year ago, neighbors said.

"She'd walk down the street and stop by neighbors' houses like she was trying to make friends," neighbor Paul Pearson told The Dallas Morning News. "She seemed kind of lonely."

I think it's you that deserves (very belated) thanks in this situation.

My mom always told me to try to make friends with everyone at school, so one day I walked up to her and and asked her if we could be friends. I would play with her on the swings, and sit next to her during class. I remember her being very shy, but a great friend. I had so much fun playing with her, and we would make believe about swinging all the way out into outer space - we even made up a song.

It's tragic how short Olivia's time on this Earth was -- but you helped make that short time so much better. That is something that you should be immensely proud of.

I am sorry that you had to deal with this, both then and now. Life sucks sometimes.

I cannot thank you enough for posting this. I am crying as I write this to you, I am at such a loss for words... That is definitely Olivia. I am so stunned and saddened to know her full story. It means the world to me to finally figure this all out. I am a little bit of a mess right now, but I thank you infinitely from the bottom of my heart.

THANK YOU. this may seem to be an unbelievable coincidence, but I was friends with Clay the 9 year old at the time. As I was reading this I thought of how similar the story that happened to me was. I called him "Clee" I dont know if its just because I was in 4th grade and didnt say his real name correctly. We were best friends, he was new on the block and we traded baseball cards and played tons of SNES together, I still have some of his games. He was supposed to spend the night with me and went home to ask for permission from his mom. He never came back. The next day, I remember it being summer before school started, I was going to swim practice and my mom took a different way to get there than the most direct route. I asked why and she started crying and told me. I remember watching the news reports and kept hearing the word "slain". I still hate that word. I snuck into his back yard and remember seeing a bloody hand print. I lived on Purdue with him. This thing happens in the Park Cities every few years. It happened again when I was in high school to a guy Craig, his step dad killed his mom and brother and shot him multiple times before killing himself. Thank you for bringing this up.

As someone who was a definite outsider as a child, with no friends, nobody to play on the swings with or make up songs, constantly made fun of for how she dressed or her horrible acne or how small she was compared to the rest of the kids, living with her mom's boyfriend who smoked crack and beat her constantly, I want you to know that you befriending this girl changed her world forever, however short forever was for her.

Jesus, now I'm in tears. Well said.

I'm a web editor at The Dallas Morning News digging through the internal archives for any other stories.

EDIT: I found A LOT of stories about it. Here is one specifically mentioning the children. I've PM'd OP as well.

EDIT 2: Found a photo of the kids in happier times -- http://imgur.com/U0jfA 

Lives of slain siblings celebrated University Park children
remembered at service for happiness they brought
Steve McGonigle
Publication Date: August 5, 1997  Page: 13A  Section: NEWS  Edition: HOME FINAL 

Friends and family of Clee and Olivia Elliott filled Highland
Park Presbyterian Church on Monday to hear the slain siblings
eulogized as children with a gift for brightening the lives of
others.

A minister called the youngsters' deaths "a tragedy which
literally knocks us to our knees" but tried to assure the grieving
that whatever pain they suffered in their short lives has ended.

"Today," the Rev. Joseph Parker said, standing near the
children's twin, ivory and gold-trimmed coffins bedecked in sprays
of flowers, "we are called to remember and hope with a cry."

Clayton Clee Elliott III, 9, and his 5-year-old sister, Olivia
Covington Elliott, were found stabbed to death Wednesday night in
the University Park home they shared with their mother, Emily Jane
Hopkins.

Police have concluded that Ms. Hopkins, 41, killed the children
and then turned the same kitchen knife on herself.

Ms. Hopkins, who was divorced from the children's father,
Clayton C. Elliott Jr., has been described by relatives as showing
signs of mental illness and in danger of losing custody of her
children.

During the hourlong service Monday, billed as a celebration of
the children's lives, Mr. Parker and the Rev. Marshall Zieman
recalled Clee and Olivia for their impishness, creativity and zest
for life.

The music included some of the children's favorite hymns, and
Mr. Parker read aloud two poems written by two teachers.

One poem, written by Debbie Hall, said in part: "Clee's no
longer with us, through no fault of his own. Clee's no longer with
us, for his little soul has gone home."

The two ministers called for prayers for Mr. Elliott and his
family and thanked those in attendance on behalf of the Elliott
family.

Ms. Hopkins was mentioned only once, when Mr. Zieman asserted
that God's love for man assured that she would be forgiven.

There were two references to mental illness and one statement by
Mr. Zieman that children sometimes fall victim to "malevolent
forces." Lisa LeMaster, a spokeswoman for Mr. Elliott, said she did
not know whether any member of Ms. Hopkins' family attended the
service.

Ms. Hopkins was buried Saturday in a cemetery across the
Arkansas River from her hometown of Van Buren, Ark.

Mr. Elliott, 40, who friends say is devastated by his children's
deaths, declined through Ms. LeMaster to be interviewed Monday.

Three days after he returned from a trip with Clee and Olivia to
Disney World, Mr. Elliott found his son's body in the kitchen and
then called 911. Police found the bodies of Ms. Hopkins and Olivia
barricaded in an upstairs bathroom.

Olivia had called her visit to the popular Florida amusement
park "the best time I've ever had in my life," Mr. Parker said.

"Clee and Olivia were a true delight," said Neil Jones, who
called himself a family friend of 15 years. "They brought a smile
to everyone they were around."

The Elliott family requested that any donations be made to the
Clee and Olivia Elliott Children's Foundation, which Ms. LeMaster
said will be dedicated to children's causes.

I'm a web editor at The Dallas Morning News digging through the internal archives for any other stories.

EDIT: I found A LOT of stories about it. Here is one specifically mentioning the children. I've PM'd OP as well.

EDIT 2: Found a photo of the kids in happier times --

Lives of slain siblings celebrated University Park children remembered at service for happiness they brought Steve McGonigle Publication Date: August 5, 1997 Page: 13A Section: NEWS Edition: HOME FINAL

Friends and family of Clee and Olivia Elliott filled Highland Park Presbyterian Church on Monday to hear the slain siblings eulogized as children with a gift for brightening the lives of others.

A minister called the youngsters' deaths "a tragedy which literally knocks us to our knees" but tried to assure the grieving that whatever pain they suffered in their short lives has ended.

"Today," the Rev. Joseph Parker said, standing near the children's twin, ivory and gold-trimmed coffins bedecked in sprays of flowers, "we are called to remember and hope with a cry."

Clayton Clee Elliott III, 9, and his 5-year-old sister, Olivia Covington Elliott, were found stabbed to death Wednesday night in the University Park home they shared with their mother, Emily Jane Hopkins.

Police have concluded that Ms. Hopkins, 41, killed the children and then turned the same kitchen knife on herself.

Ms. Hopkins, who was divorced from the children's father, Clayton C. Elliott Jr., has been described by relatives as showing signs of mental illness and in danger of losing custody of her children.

During the hourlong service Monday, billed as a celebration of the children's lives, Mr. Parker and the Rev. Marshall Zieman recalled Clee and Olivia for their impishness, creativity and zest for life.

The music included some of the children's favorite hymns, and Mr. Parker read aloud two poems written by two teachers.

One poem, written by Debbie Hall, said in part: "Clee's no longer with us, through no fault of his own. Clee's no longer with us, for his little soul has gone home."

The two ministers called for prayers for Mr. Elliott and his family and thanked those in attendance on behalf of the Elliott family.

Ms. Hopkins was mentioned only once, when Mr. Zieman asserted that God's love for man assured that she would be forgiven.

There were two references to mental illness and one statement by Mr. Zieman that children sometimes fall victim to "malevolent forces." Lisa LeMaster, a spokeswoman for Mr. Elliott, said she did not know whether any member of Ms. Hopkins' family attended the service.

Ms. Hopkins was buried Saturday in a cemetery across the Arkansas River from her hometown of Van Buren, Ark.

Mr. Elliott, 40, who friends say is devastated by his children's deaths, declined through Ms. LeMaster to be interviewed Monday.

Three days after he returned from a trip with Clee and Olivia to Disney World, Mr. Elliott found his son's body in the kitchen and then called 911. Police found the bodies of Ms. Hopkins and Olivia barricaded in an upstairs bathroom.

Olivia had called her visit to the popular Florida amusement park "the best time I've ever had in my life," Mr. Parker said.

"Clee and Olivia were a true delight," said Neil Jones, who called himself a family friend of 15 years. "They brought a smile to everyone they were around."

The Elliott family requested that any donations be made to the Clee and Olivia Elliott Children's Foundation, which Ms. LeMaster said will be dedicated to children's causes.

Reddit cries more often than John Boehner.

http://karisable.com/dvcacasech.htm ^ something else you might find interesting. Apparently, Jane Hopkins had a twin sister who also tried to kill her kids a year earlier.

Hehe, Boehner.

Dammit, on the verge of tears then suddenly out comes a little giggle.

FUCK YOU REDDIT.

Found out why you called him Clee.

Clayton Clee Elliott III, 9, and his 5-year-old sister, Olivia Covington Elliott, were found stabbed to death Wednesday night in the University Park home they shared with their mother, Emily Jane Hopkins.

Its further down so thought you might not have seen it. I'm sorry you lost a friend.

Reddit: Come for the touching personal stories, stay for the boner jokes.

I am too. I was playing my guitar and was playing a little sad melody on it while I was reading the story, and when I realized the sad background music I started tearing up really bad.

To the OP: Just know, she's up there somewhere- and she is taken care of. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

I actually attended DIS with you at the same time as well (I was a few years older though.) I remember hearing about this and its so heartbreaking. I just took my yearbooks out and uploaded 2 images for you 
http://i.imgur.com/7oezo.jpg http://i.imgur.com/QqXY9.jpg

PM if you want me to scan images of your whole class (the entire page)

I actually attended DIS with you at the same time as well (I was a few years older though.) I remember hearing about this and its so heartbreaking. I just took my yearbooks out and uploaded 2 images for you http://i.imgur.com/QqXY9.jpg

PM if you want me to scan images of your whole class (the entire page)

changed her world forever, however short forever was for her.

Putting it this way is one of the saddest things I've ever read.

Wow, what a small world.

If you are downvoting due to a minor christianity allusion, you are a heartless prick.

Clayton. I totally played soccer with him.

I remember when my mom told me what happened. He was smart enough to know what the fuck was up and tried to run after witnessing her kill his sister. She totally ran him down and dragged him back into the house. Pretty brutal.

Found these...

On July 30, 1997, Jane, 41, fatally stabbed her 9-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter and then k...

Second link - related. Dallas Morning News, Aug 15, 1997

LAYTON AND OLIVIA HOPKINS - Clayton 9 years old, and his 6 year old sister Olivia were murdered ... - 3/4 way down the page.

Clayton 9 years old, and his 6 year old sister Olivia were murdered by their mother.

I'm sorry.

Oh man, the onions.

But that dosn't make sense to me because if it happened in July why would you be in school?

One day, suddenly, she stopped coming to school

You may be reading too much into the wording. It likely means that after summer vacation she was gone. Think about when you were that young. Memories lump together in strange ways.

Atheist upvoter here. Fuck some people, man.

Touching boner jokes? hehehehe.

MY EXPERIENCE W/REDDIT: Come for the boner jokes, stay for the touching personal stories...and more boner jokes

from this I found:

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS August 15, 1997, Friday, HOME FINAL EDITION Suicide, children's slayings stun twins' family, friends; They saw signs of mental illness, had no idea tragedy was near VAN BUREN, Ark. - In a two-story home on a bluff with a panoramic view of the Arkansas River, the Hopkins twins grew up as the best and brightest. One would become a chemical engineer and a Harvard-educated businesswoman. The other would join a nationally known brokerage firm and rise quickly through Dallas' social circles. But beneath the success, relatives said, lurked a mental illness that destroyed Emily Jane Hopkins and nearly claimed her sister, Nancy Jean Hopkins Byrd. Jane Hopkins, 41, fatally stabbed her 9-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter July 30 and then killed herself with the same kitchen knife in the family's University Park home. Almost three years earlier, a pregnant Mrs. Byrd tried to kill herself and her two young sons with an overdose of a prescription drug. Dozens of interviews with the fraternal twins' relatives, friends, colleagues and acquaintances reveal nothing that would foreshadow the tragedy to come. Those closest to them did say that they saw signs of mental illness but could not prevent the heartbreak. "Everybody is sick about it. Nobody understands it," said Bruce Neidecker, 41, who dated both twins and earned with Jean the title of Mr. and Miss Van Buren High School in the mid-1970s. "They are not vicious killers. I can't tell you what happened. . . . If it could happen to them, it could happen to anyone." From their modest hometown to the exclusive Dallas-area neighborhoods where the twins settled, the slayings have stunned those who knew them and left many wondering whether Jane Hopkins' children could have been saved. Mrs. Byrd was charged with attempted capital murder and found not guilty by reason of insanity in June 1996. Doctors say she had a bipolar disorder, a form of depression often shared by relatives and whose victims swing easily from excitement to despair.

http://www.schizophrenia.com/family/viol.htm#suicide

But that dosn't make sense to me because if it happened in July why would you be in school?

One day, suddenly, she stopped coming to school

As onions are sliced or eaten, cells are broken, allowing enzymes called alliinases to break down amino acid sulphoxides and generate sulphenic acids. A specific sulfenic acid, 1-propenesulfenic acid, formed when onions are cut, is rapidly rearranged by a second enzyme, called the lachrymatory factor synthase or LFS, giving syn-propanethial-S-oxide, a volatile gas known as the onion lachrymatory factor or LF. The LF gas diffuses through the air and eventually reaches the eye, where it activates sensory neurons, creating a stinging sensation. Tear glands produce tears to dilute and flush out the irritant. Chemicals that exhibit such an effect on the eyes are known as lachrymatory agents.

OHHHHHHH, I see what you did there.

This, a million times.

We were poor, we moved a lot, my parents were angry and violent people. We moved all the time. I was always the new kid at a school, at one point I was in 3 different schools in a year. I was little and shy and my clothes and shoes never fit right. On top of it all, the muscles that control your peeing were not properly formed in me and I was constantly peeing myself. Kids have a way of picking up on these things and can be cruel.

I distinctly remember, however, the kids who were not cruel. There were girls very much like the OP who were told by their parents to be kind and understanding, to try to make friends with everyone. I could see them making the effort, befriending me because they knew it was a good thing to do. They may not have done it by choice but there was nothing disingenuous about the effort. Finally, in 3rd grade we stayed in one place for a couple years. The kids who made the effort to be kind to me became my friends and I cannot express how important that was to me. Even now when I think about it, I am so grateful to them for kindness and generosity of spirit. Kids can be cruel, but also some kids can be pretty awesome.

Damn. Damn damn damn :(

This brings up a rather sad memory for me. I remember in high school...I'd always hang out with the same guys at lunch or study hall or whatever.

Then one day this kid just started hanging out with us. Chris was his name. I wasn't sure where he had come from, or who introduced him to the group. But I remember he was rather pasty looking, thin, and always wore a hat.

Well I never said anything and just accepted him right off the bat because he was a cool guy and certainly accepted me for who I was (I, like many here on reddit <I'm sure> was a high school outcast).

I never really got to know him very well.

Well only a year or two later I graduated...never saw him in person again.

Then, even worse, I DID see him one last time...In a newspaper article. He died from cancer. Now the hat, the pastyness...it all made sense.

I've been more outgoing and talkative ever sense. Its just a fucking shame to miss out in knowing someone. You'll never know when you might meet someone amazing, and yet completely unknown to society.

I've met so many interesting people with such amazing stories...

Funny how the internet does that.

I've moved so close to my monitors at work that the others in my open cubicle can't see the manly tears being shed.

Way to hustle, Reddit!

EDIT: Comma added

Really amazing that 2 redditors befriended these children growing up. It's possible you and the OP have some mutual friends and don't know it.

I remember these as well. Hard to forget when stuff like that happens in UP. I lived on Marquette.

Reddit: forever alone -- together.

Could this be it?

Police say University Park woman fatally stabbed kids, self Author: Michael Saul Staff Writer of The Dallas Morning News Publish Date: August 1, 1997

UNIVERSITY PARK - A 41-year-old Harvard-educated woman fatally stabbed her young son and daughter and then killed herself with the same kitchen knife, Police Chief Bob Dixon said Thursday.

The bodies of Emily Jane Hopkins and her children, Clee Elliott III, 9, and Olivia C. Elliott, 5, were found dead about 8 p.m. Wednesday in their upscale two-story home on Purdue Street, just north of Lovers Lane.

Ms. Hopkins left about a half-dozen "philosophical" notes...

I searched the news archive of Dallas news, but you have to purchase the article: http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_product=DM&p_theme=dm&p_action=search&p_maxdocs=200&s_hidethis=no&s_siteloc=&s_issue_id=&s_size=&s_issue=no&s_search_type=&d_datemode=0&d_searched=yes&d_datemode=0&s_dispstring=mother%20kill%20children%20self%20olivia&p_field_advanced-0=&p_text_advanced-0=%28mother%20kill%20children%20self%20olivia%29&p_perpage=10&p_sort=YMD_date:D&xcal_useweights=no

Your update said you aren't sure where to go from here.

It's a shot in the dark, but you might try looking for Olivia's father. The article jacques45 found mentions him, Clayton Elliott, Jr. It's only been 13 years, and barring any unforeseen medical issues/freak accidents, I would bet he's still alive.

I'm sure he could help you piece together a greater understanding that you couldn't handle at such a young age.

Also I'm sure he'd love to know his children were loved and cared for, and that they won't be forgotten.

Sorry for your loss.

I also found [this reference](Link available upon request, but dubious and inflammatory in origin) to their story, as well as information on a Children's Foundation in their name, C/O Clayton Clee Elliott Jr.

As for Clayton, it looks like he's still in real estate.

Absolutely!!! I knew Reddit was capable of wondrous things, but you have truly outdone yourselves. Thank you all so much!

More atheists need to be like you, man! I know 5 atheists all of which are friends of mine. 4 out of 5 of them mock me whenever I mention my religious beliefs. I tolerate their beliefs, why can't they tolerate mine?

Is fricking EVERYBODY from there?!

(Grapevine High class of '96, woo)

Possibly including the Clee And Olivia Elliott Childrens Foundation named for Olivia and her brother.

(No idea about this group .. even if they still exist .. or what they do .. only that they were named for the children)

http://i.imgur.com/sMhhM.png

perhaps she came back from the summer break and noticed Olivia wasn't around?

sniff sniff yeah I have those TPS reports.. sniff right here...

Fuck. As a father of two young kids, this brings me to tears. There is nothing worse in the world than what that man saw. I wonder what became of him and how he's doing now.

Wow that's actually quite an insane story. This needs to be upvoted for relevant new information.

I'm glad the OP is able to gain some closure from all of this.

By Inglips mighty beard, sometimes I just love you people.

You should go pay a visit to her grave-site. It might give you some closure.

OP, the world certainly could use more people like you. Although this story breaks my heart (why am I tearing up?) it genuinely makes me grateful that sometimes reddit truly helps people get closure on subjects such as this. When I first read the name Olivia I was reminded of how my entire elementary school wore hats everyday, because a little girl named olivia had a traumatic head injury once and had to have her head shaved for surgery. We wore hats so she wouldn't feel self conscious. I know I'm rambling, but it's just so nice how humanity can seem so peaceful for a few fleeting hours. Good wishes for all your endeavors, redditors worldwide.

I'd prey for those young innocent lost souls

Unfortunate typo.

But I agree. That's terrible.

Wish I could do more than upvote.

I actually attended DIS with you at the same time as well (I was a few years older though.) I remember hearing about this and its so heartbreaking. 

I just took my yearbooks out and uploaded 2 images for you http://i.imgur.com/7oezo.jpg http://i.imgur.com/QqXY9.jpg

PM if you want me to scan images of your whole class (the entire page)

I actually attended DIS with you at the same time as well (I was a few years older though.) I remember hearing about this and its so heartbreaking.

I just took my yearbooks out and uploaded 2 images for you http://i.imgur.com/QqXY9.jpg

PM if you want me to scan images of your whole class (the entire page)

I'd still like to know what happened to a guy I used to know, named Dwayne Sappington, from Columbia, MO. He'd told a few of us that his parents beat him, but nothing ever came of it. He was singled out as a weirdo--and semi-mentally handicapped--at school, and constantly made fun of, although people seemed to have a strange level of respect for him at the same time. We found out around 1992 that he and his parents were on vacation in Florida the summer before, out in either the Atlantic or Gulf in a boat, when he accidentally fell over and drowned. Those of us who knew him well enough to know that he was abused--and that was also the cause of his mental difficulties--all came to the same conclusion that it was murder. I've looked, but never found any reports on the matter. For all his problems, he remained a legend in his time, but once he was gone, he was almost immediately forgotten by everyone.

She was the daughter of Ann Hopkins of Van Buren and the late Glen Hopkins Sr. and was preceded in death by her son, Clayton Clee Elliott III, and daughter, Olivia Covington Elliott.

That's too honorable a way of saying she murdered them.

This is a photo of Clayton and Olivia: http://imgur.com/F5Rjv 

Terrible quality, but it might help remember happier times.

This is a photo of Clayton and Olivia:

Terrible quality, but it might help remember happier times.

Holy crap, that pic of the Hopkins kids looks squished.  Let's see if I can un-squish it...

Hopkins Kids

It's now got the normal aspect ratio... but the image is still horrendous.  It's not doing justice to the kids.  :(

:-(

Wait, I've got an idea...

EDIT:  Never mind, someone else found this:  http://imgur.com/U0jfA

Holy crap, that pic of the Hopkins kids looks squished. Let's see if I can un-squish it...

It's now got the normal aspect ratio... but the image is still horrendous. It's not doing justice to the kids. :(

:-(

Wait, I've got an idea...

EDIT: Never mind, someone else found this: http://imgur.com/U0jfA

Found another piece to the story... apparently Hopkins' sister was also mentally ill and also staged a plot to kill her family:

http://www.schizophrenia.com/family/viol.htm

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS

August 15, 1997, Friday, HOME FINAL EDITION

Suicide, children's slayings stun twins' family, friends; They saw signs of mental illness, had no idea tragedy was near

VAN BUREN, Ark. - In a two-story home on a bluff with a panoramic view of the Arkansas River, the Hopkins twins grew up as the best and brightest.

One would become a chemical engineer and a Harvard-educated businesswoman. The other would join a nationally known brokerage firm and rise quickly through Dallas' social circles. But beneath the success, relatives said, lurked a mental illness that destroyed Emily Jane Hopkins and nearly claimed her sister, Nancy Jean Hopkins Byrd.

Jane Hopkins, 41, fatally stabbed her 9-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter July 30 and then killed herself with the same kitchen knife in the family's University Park home. Almost three years earlier, a pregnant Mrs. Byrd tried to kill herself and her two young sons with an overdose of a prescription drug.

Dozens of interviews with the fraternal twins' relatives, friends, colleagues and acquaintances reveal nothing that would foreshadow the tragedy to come. Those closest to them did say that they saw signs of mental illness but could not prevent the heartbreak.

"Everybody is sick about it. Nobody understands it," said Bruce Neidecker, 41, who dated both twins and earned with Jean the title of Mr. and Miss Van Buren High School in the mid-1970s. "They are not vicious killers. I can't tell you what happened. . . . If it could happen to them, it could happen to anyone."

From their modest hometown to the exclusive Dallas-area neighborhoods where the twins settled, the slayings have stunned those who knew them and left many wondering whether Jane Hopkins' children could have been saved.

Mrs. Byrd was charged with attempted capital murder and found not guilty by reason of insanity in June 1996. Doctors say she had a bipolar disorder, a form of depression often shared by relatives and whose victims swing easily from excitement to despair.

EDIT The grave of the mother is online:

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=Hopkins&GSiman=1&GScid=53914&GRid=15640126&

It wasn't until getting down here to your comment that I finally teared up. I see the world normally as just a shitty place, but you cut through my outer cynic layers to the emotional little girl underneath, and made me feel things all the more poignantly.

I am truly sorry you had to grow up that way. Hugs

She was five so your talking probably kindergarden. It's possible that it was a year round or summer school program, or even daycare that was refered to by op's parents as school.

I'm not crying because there's no one here to hold my hand, for your information there's an inflammation in my tear gland.

Fucking onions...not as much fun as it sounds

Your access is exceedingly valuable. Would you know if the archives are accessible via Internet? This is not for myself, but for the OP, who may wish to know more about the entire story.

Thanks for what you've already provided.

From one atheist to another: Amen.

Sorry man.

Reddit: Come touch a personal boner, er...nevermind, you had it right the first time.

sob

fuck this thread.

As an atheist I'd never dream of objecting to someone offering prayers to someone else. Who am I to decide whether or not the person receiving them gets comfort from them or not? Even if the OP were an atheist as well it wouldn't mean she couldn't be thankful for the thoughts - and really, it's about the OP and Olivia. No one else.

It's been a while since this thread was posted, so I don't know if you'll see this.

But I found a photo and a memorial page of your friend Olivia.

http://leelah.tripod.com/index46.html

Wikileak EVERYTHING.

No, sadly, they are internal-use only archives that I'm looking through. The public archives are paid use only and only give limited access for free: dallasnews.com/archives

I just joined Reddit, a few days ago. Is it normal to come across amazing human beings like the OP on a daily basis? Goddammit, I'm still tearing up.

It all comes down to how a kid is raised by their parents. All parents should teach their kids to be kind and understanding to everyone, but then again there's so many shitty parents that don't teach their kids absolutely anything, or even make them live with some scumbag boyfriend that abuses them. It's really sad how people have children when they have no clue how to raise them or no regard for them or anyone but themselves.

Unfortunate nickname for this thread

Really sorry about your grief/discovery :(

I think it might be good to try to get in touch with her father. I lost a few high school friends so far (i'm 38) and in one case it was really cool to connect with the widow of one of my former friends. She was happy that I remembered him and talked about some of the good times we had. It might be cathartic for both of you... Worth a shot, anyway.

Must not cry at work. Must not cry at work.

I knew the mom. I'm a little bit older than you, but I think I played soccer with one of her kids.

Shit dude, I am breaking up just at the fact that this is real..do you have someone to talk to?

I snuck into his back yard and remember seeing a bloody hand print.

Horrifyingly sad :(

I knew I shouldn't click the photo link... but I did :(

that is a great idea I will tonight. I felt guilty for a long time that I even had them and refused to play them. Also one of them was Mortal Kombat 3 and while I loved the game and eventually started playing again I didn't like the blood after he was killed. We would try to do the fatalities and I stopped because of the violence. Now I am over it.

I'm so sorry. But you should find comfort in the fact that you befriended this child without judgment.

I couldn't remember this, but my mom told me that Olivia always came to school in tattered clothing, looking very unkempt.

Your blindness to this detail shows how you don't judge people by their outside appearances, and if there were more people like you, the world would be a much better place.

Wow, only on Reddit could I see two people who never knew each other but were connected so directly meet and talk to each other. I'm sorry for both of you guys.

I second contacting him and letting him know she had a great friend, and elsewhere in this very thread so did Clee. Incidentally, dad still runs the "Clee and Olivia Elliott Children's Foundation". They are still active according to that, and in 2008 gave $5000 to "Special Care & Career Services, chartered in 1963, provides services to children and adults with developmental disabilities so they can lead fulfilling lives in their communities. Those services include education, therapy and training to help their clients reach their full potential. "

Donate to organizations that help children in need?

Or...if you see someone looking lost or lonely, a helping hand or potential friend could make their day. Just suggestions :)

Oh it's judging alright... It's judging

In case you miss it, because you won't get an orangered like OP ... here is a wonderful pic of Clee and Olivia:

http://www.reddit.com/sub/AskReddit/comments/f1saj/my_mom_recently_sat_me_down_and_told_me_the_tr...

People with bipolar disorder usually attempt suicide during the manic phase. When they are deeply depressed, they often lack enough motivation.

Atheist that agrees [with Jack877] here.

Fucking onions... how do they work...?

This reminds me of something that happened when I was a child. It's not extremely similar, but here goes: A girl joined our class when I was a freshman in high school mid-term. I really didn't think much of it. She was a tall girl with long hair and horrible acne. Not someone I paid much attention to. After a couple of weeks at our school, she began making overt sexual advances at some of my friends which we all thought was weird. Stranger still, I walked into the boy's restroom one day during classes and there she was. It freaked me out a little. I couldn't pee with a girl in the bathroom. She was standing in front of the mirror gluing vampire fangs to her canines. I asked her what was going on and she hissed at me, so I just left. Not long after that, she stopped coming to classes. Most everyone didn't seem to notice. She hadn't been there long, hadn't made any friends and I guess hadn't registered in most of my classmates minds. I asked a couple of friends and a couple of teachers about her. Eventually, someone told me she had been found strangled and dumped into a nearby lake. Here father/step-father (don't remember which) was the prime suspect. To this day, I don't even know if it's true but that was all the information I could ever find. That was the last I heard of her. Still makes me cringe to think about it. She wasn't a friend, but I noticed her and I realized she was in pain. What happened to her was fucked up and thinking about it messes with me.

That's because he forgot a comma. Easy mistake to make. Easy mistake to correct.

I read this in the opposite way it was intended, like the OP was hustling Reddit.

-hugs-

I hate to be the bearer of bad news but I think that's chlamydia

Just FYI bipolar disorder is not a form of schizophrenia. They must have both been in a severe depressive phase and not on medication.

I'm in tears too...I wanna go home and hug my babies. :(

Goddammit, there's something in both of my eyes.

Reddit, in my opinion, is where you can find many amazing people who will do amazing and unthinkable things for others in need. That, and you can hear about other such stories that might not have happened directly over Reddit. Welcome, by the way!