NEW ALBANY, IN (WAVE) – Friday marks one year since an accused serial killer was taken off the streets of New Albany.
William Clyde Gibson continues to await trials for the deaths of Christine Whitis, 75, Stephanie Kirk, 35, and Karen Hodella, 45.
An entire community was rocked the day William Clyde Gibson, 54, was arrested at the Wal-Mart on Grant Line Road in New Albany. He was originally charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated and resisting arrest. What he's accused of doing now, even a year later, is still hard for anyone to understand.
"It's been a long year," said Christine Whitis' son Mike at yet another pre-trial hearing for Gibson.
Gibson is charged with killing Christine Whitis, whose body was found at his home on Woodburne Drive April 19, 2012. After his arrest for that murder, police say Gibson also confessed to killing Hodella in 2002. A few days later, he was charged with murdering Kirk who had been missing for more than a month. Her body was uncovered in Gibson's back yard.
Mike Whitis said a year later it's still hard to believe his mother is gone. "Every day somebody will say something or, do something that will trigger a memory."
But for Mike, they are all good memories and he hopes a year after his mom's death made the news, everyone who watched will think of her as he does. "She was quite an extraordinary individual that would help anybody."
He said in the year since losing his mother, he's changed the way he views the world. "I've come to the realization that you take each day as they come. You never know what's going to happen." He wants everyone out there to make sure they are taking advantage of the time they have left with their parents. "You have to really appreciate those around you every chance you get."
Mike continues his mission to be in the courtroom every time Gibson goes before a judge. "People always told me I favor my mother, especially through the eyes, so I want him to have the opportunity to look into those."
His daughters, without him knowing are remembering their grandmother through a foundation they started without Mike knowing. "I was very proud of them."
It's called ‘Justice for Mamaw: The Christine Whitis Foundation.' "They have established this fund to help senior citizens to help with security issues around their home." Mike said it's started out small, but they've gotten two big donations. One donation was anonymous. The other came from PC Building Materials in New Albany.
For those donations, Mike said he's grateful. It means five or 10 years after the day his mother was found dead, it truly will be her name and the good that has come from her life that people will remember, not the man who police say is responsible.
Gibson's first murder trial for the death of Whitis is expected to start July 15. He could get the death penalty.
For more information about the Christine Whitis Foundation, or to donate, click here.
Tuesday, April 20 2010 11:21 PM EDT2010-04-21 03:21:00 GMT
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