Remembering Hanna Williams, on the Eleventh Anniversary of Her Death

It’s a chilly, drizzly day here in Seattle, close to 50 degrees F (10 C). That’s what the weather was like 11 years ago today, when Ethiopian adoptee Hanna Williams died outdoors, in her adoptive family’s backyard. The cause of her death was hypothermia and malnutrition, the tragic culmination of the abuse she endured before she died in 2011 at the age of 13.

Her adoptive parents, Larry and Carri Williams, remain in jail after being found guilty, in 2013, for Hanna”s death. I’ve often wondered how Hanna’s siblings are doing, having witnessed the abuse and death of Hanna at the hands of their parents. I wish them well, along with the other Ethiopian adoptee, Immanuel. What scars they all carry.

Hanna would be 24 years old now, had she not died.

We are dedicating our upcoming book, Lions Roaring Far From Home: An Anthology by Ethiopian Adoptees, to Hanna, and to Ethiopian adoptees who have died by suicide. We will use the proceeds from the sale of the book to support adoptees, perhaps to offer DNA testing, or to supplement airfare to Ethiopia, or some other ways to center their needs.

A photo of Ethiopian adoptee Hanna Williams at the orphanage. Hanna is wearing a blue and white striped shirt and has a slight, shy smile.
Hana in Ethiopia, prior to adoption. May she Rest in Peace and in power.

You’re in our hearts, Hanna. We won’t forget you.

2 thoughts on “Remembering Hanna Williams, on the Eleventh Anniversary of Her Death

  1. As an adoption worker in Washington, I followed this story in horror and shock that anyone could treat a child so cruelly, much less one they chose to adopt. My heart broke thinking how helpless and foresaken that baby girl must have felt. May she always be held safe in the arms of the Lord, free of pain and bathed in love.

  2. I can’t believe how fast the years have passed. I hope they are going more slowly for her killers in jail! How anyone can treat another human being like that I shall never understand, much less a child. I hope heaven is beautiful Hanna! I’m sure you are enjoying the peace and love that you should have been given here on earth. Hugs! 🌹🌹❣️❤️❣️🌹🌹

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