Ottawa Citizen
Saturday 9 December 2000

Letters from the family:
You alone have the power to help Teresa

Luigi Bonacci
Citizen Special
Ottawa Citizen

My name is Luigi Bonacci. I am a fourth year student at Carleton University in the Bachelor of Commerce program. I am 22 years of age, the brother of Teresa Bonacci and son to Frank and Maria Bonacci. I am writing to you on behalf of myself and the rest of my family about the events that had occurred on Feb. 24, 1999, when we were picked up and interrogated by the authorities.

As far back as I can remember, over the past several years I have seen the ups and down within my family. Like any family there is never a perfect one. There was nothing more shocking and painful as what we have seen over a year ago. Never had my parents or I believed that this could have been possible.

Since this situation occurred, many kept close ties with us and helped us through these hard times. However, others were shocked with dismay when they had first heard what had happened.

We are a simple family, very well known within this community and my parents worked very hard for many years to earn their respect and admiration among them. They were both born in Italy and immigrated to Canada in the late '60s at a very young age. Nothing could have prepared them for something like this.

I'll admit my sister and I had our quarrels in the past, basically just to get attention like any other sibling rivalry. There were days where we were fine and others where you could not even talk to her. I had never confronted her with this because I always wanted to forget the past and worry about the future and to be happy of what she has now, not what she could have had. She is a very friendly, kind, generous and very simple in nature. Everyone knew her and loved her. Nothing ever changed that, even now.

Since Feb. 24, 1999, I had to be strong to support my parents. I have many friends who at the time supported my family and I, and still do. I had never imagined that my parents who I had looked up to all my life would end up the way they have. Nor did I imagine my own mother being hospitalized for three weeks. This was due to the despicable media frenzy who hounded my family for useless propaganda. It's not something you would want to see, the person who gave you life, weaker than you are.

I will do everything within my power to help this situation come to be just, compassionate and healthy for everyone involved. You and you alone have the power to help Teresa. I implore you to help put this incident behind us and seek some form of rehabilitation for my sister, Teresa.

Jail will not suffice. While incarcerated, Teresa has had very little, if any, medical help that she desperately needs.

We have the support from all over, from friends, family and the community. I request that you look at my plea and understand that jail would not be the suitable place for her. I ask that you free her and provide her with the essential medical help that she needs.

Thank you for your attention and understanding.

Copyright 2001 Ottawa Citizen Group Inc.