BEATING HEARTS: Stories of Domestic Violence

Carried in the Arms of Angels

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Carried in the Arms of Angels

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My name is Anne Butler, and I have been carried in the arms of angels.

I was drinking a cup of coffee on the back porch of Butler Greenwood, the antebellum home that has been in my family for eight generations. It was a peaceful morning. Just then, Murray Henderson drove up. Murray was the former warden of Angola State Penitentiary—and also my husband. But we had never been happy together. The week before, I had told him I needed some space, and he had moved out.

I invited Murray in and we st on the porch. He didn't seem agitated or angry. But suddenly, without even raising his voice, he said, "You want some space? I'll give you space." I looked up and he was standing over me, holding a black .38 pistol. He shot me six times at close range.

That's when the angels came. It's the only way I can explain it: two angels came and held me, so I did not struggle or scream. I just watched as the blood pooled in my lap and poured down the sides of my wicker chair. The angels helped me remain as still as death, and Murray stopped shooting.

Those angels saved my life.

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