National Domestic Violence Hotline Blog

Hope, Help, Heartfelt Thanks

The following entry is written by Regan Martin, survivor and subject of a blog post we featured a few weeks ago dealing with GPS tracking written by her mother Cherry Simpson. This is a follow up to that story and reveals new developments in her case.

Hope, Help, Heartfelt Thanks

I am a survivor of spousal rape and abuse. Lost, alone and repeatedly victimized and dehumanized by the system is how my I felt for the three years I have struggled through the system. I have received help from shelters, advocates, and even gotten media attention but it has been extremely hard on me, I lost my home, I have spent over $22,000 on attorney fees, relocation fees, and countless hours in court. It seemed hopeless and without end. I hated the thought of how my children and I could live like this any longer.

Then in November 2008 Rachel Sandal Morse became my friend, advocate and pro bono [Latin, For the public good] attorney she helped the prosecution in the goal of holding the offender accountable and me and my children, from any future harm. My mother had written a letter asking for help from the Cindy Bischof Foundation. Harvard Law Professor Diane Rosenfeld contacted an ex-student with the firm of Jenner and Block in Chicago, IL.

Rachel first acted on my behalf as my attorney during the criminal prosecution of the 3rd (13 counts) and 4th (3 counts) violation’s of OP. Rachel made the court more bearable; she made me comfortable and spoke for me better than anyone ever had. Words can’t describe how she changed everything. She was my communicator, my navigator, my rescuer, and gave me hope when I thought I had none. She was so gracious and knowledgeable. She made everyone want to do a better job. She helped mend the huge gaping hole of misunderstanding and uncaring felt between the system and the victim. She turned it all around so smoothly, so kindly. She helped my children and me more than anyone else ever has.

Don’t give up hope, my abuser is in prison now and I have some sense of peace until his release on 1/2/2011. I am continuing to fight and I have an active order of protection even though he is in prison. He has stalked me since 2006. I have asked a federal prosecutor to do a Federal Stalking Threshold Analysis.

Don’t be afraid to ask for legal help with your domestic violence case. There are people out there willing to serve and help others. I thank God for them.

Recently my mother wrote about the use of the GPS on my abuser and how it helped to save our lives. Because she shared my story a representative from Justice for Children came forward and offered to help me with the visitation family court problems still looming over us.

I will do all I can to keep my children and myself safe. Don’t be afraid to share your story. Asking for help is good. Helping others helps you.

12 replies
  1. ROSE says:


  2. Maureen says:


    I cried when I read this. Such beauty and grace and all the good there is in life shown through in your words. My guess is you are on the path to healing. God and your Mom :) continues to be with you, walk the path with you, you are safe.


  3. Cherry Simpson says:

    My daughter Regan, was born smiling, she had this kind of beaming face, SUNLIT. She was always my special gift from God. As she grew she learned to look past the bad and try to see good – but then she married a batterer. On May 30, 2006 he made her light go out. I have been praying for it to come back ever since then.

    My grandson’s ages 5 and 6 had helped me clean the blood of the floor after their mother’s rape and beating. They don’t know what rape is but they know what their father is capable of – they too were his targets. The 6 yr old refused to pray to God that day telling me God doesn’t answer his prayers. I’ll never forget that and you will see how Rachel helped to change even a little boy’s faith in his Heavenly Father.

    In Nov 2008 Regan’s then 8 yr. old son told me God had brought Rachel to help his Mommy because he had prayed for an angel. I have to tell you, every time I saw Rachel that’s what I would think of, she’s “Regan’s Angel” the one who her son had prayed to come. Remember he wasn’t ever going to pray again? Well he did and God listened and answered in His usual Godly way – more than I could have ever known to ask for.

    Many, many people have come forward to help Regan and I want all who have helped to know they’ve let my little girl’s light shine again. By shining a light on the process and thus changing the outcome. I am eternally grateful and thankful for all who have helped for they have rekindled Regan’s inner spirit. She’s shining again!

  4. JoAnne says:

    I wish I could be strong. I am a depressed weak person, who would rather disappear then “win the fight”. Bravo to you and all the courage and strength it took for you to move forward. God Bless you and may you have the most wonderful life now!

    • Cherry Simpson says:

      Dear JoAnne,

      Please don’t give up hope, it will get better. I’ve told Regan to think back to once when she was little and we were walking on a dark path in the woods near our house. She was afraid and I held her hand and told her as soon as we reached the end of the path we’d be home and we’d have light.

      This is just like that dark path in the woods. Look for a hand to hold – ask for help, be it from a family member or a shelter, or a friend – ask and try to have hope.

      If you have children you have to do this for them. You maybe their only hope.

      Regan still has many struggles and fears as many victim’s of abuse do. I encourage her to speak out and put the crime in the light. It helps her and others to do so.

      You and all the abused are in my prayers.

      FYI – A Good Support Group for Missing and Abused Women can be found at tell them Cherry sent you!

      Regan’s Mom (Cherry)

  5. Carol Regan says:

    Dearest Cherry:

    Going through the experiences that Regan has gone through, brings back memories. Back in the 60’s I had gone through a violent marriage. Divorced with 3 children and he still stalked me. Never wanted to let me go. Regan is courageous and I know God is with her. She has a wonderful mother and family and is always in my prayers. God is good and all the time. Call if you need me. Love in Christ, Carol

  6. Claudia FitzHenry says:

    Hello Cherry, I am gald to here from you with this update. It is so reassuring to hear from others that are so supportive. Just understand, you are in the prayers of those of us who know you and also know God is and will always be with you and protect you. God Bless, keep in touch, Claudia

  7. John E Quinn says:

    Cherry..While I am deeply sorry for all the all the terrible things your daughter went through,I am grateful to GOD that He made her strong,like you and just a plain wonderful soul,like you.Her terrible experence will make her able to help others which in turn..will help her. You should be very proud of her !!!! My prayers will be said for her and her children also.GOD bless you and your wonderful family. “BIG HUGS…ALWAYS” , john

  8. Sara Huizenga Lubbers says:

    That’s so beautiful! Regan is such a wonderful writer too, like her Mama.. 😉

    Isn’t it amazing how God works, weaving this path between all of you and others?

    So good to know and see in the lives of others, that even during our darkest moments, He’s still there.


    • Susan Holley says:

      Texas legislature has just sent HB 1506 to the governor for signature. This law will allow judges to order GPS to monitor domestic violence offenders and will allow victims to request this technology. Thank you to all who have gone before.

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