In 2015, Dolores and Horacio Segovia lost their 23-year old son Homero when he was driving to work and a driver under the influence of drugs crossed the center lane and hit his car. Homero died at the scene. The Segovias became members of a specific type of grieving family – those that have lost a loved one to a crime. After receiving The Christi Center’s information from the Department of Public Safety, they reached out for support. Without the other knowing, they both called on the same day. Horacio recalled feeling “an instant connection” with the person he spoke to on the phone, and he and Delores decided to attend a meeting together.
The Segovias attend Monday night Loss of a Child Group as well as the Crime Victims group on Tuesdays. Dolores said the Crime Victims Group is an important part of her support network because “Someone took my son and it’s a different type of loss”. The people in this group understand exactly what I’m going through.” She feels supported by her fellow group members because she can talk freely about the person responsible for her son’s death and also talk about her feeling dealing with the justice system, which is an experience unique to the members of this group. She also mentioned the judgement-free feeling of the group as sometimes “She needs to talk about something she’s already talked about and that’s always OK.”
The Christi Center supported the Segovias by connecting them with other families that had similar losses, preparing them for what would happen at the trial, inviting them to attend a similar trial and supporting them through a plea agreement process. Cathy Collins, Christi Center intake specialist and Crime Victims Advocate, was there for them every step of the way.
The Christi Center has helped by “giving me hope – these people are my family and support me in a way that no one else can.” Delores says “This is not a place I signed up for, but it’s a blessing this place exists.”
As they continue to heal from their loss, the Segovias have started to give back, in ways big and small. They first supplied all the mean (and the most popular dessert!) for a recent Crime Victims’ potluck. They spoke on a panel abut crime victims’ experiences for the Travis County Sheriff’s Office. They are also native Spanish speakers and have helped several families in the group with translation. Horacio recalls one family that he helped. “They didn’t feel like they could ever come out of the dark, but after three meetings they told me they were starting to see light.” They look forward to continuing to help with outreach to Spanish speakers, which is a growing need in our community. Families like the Segovias and this spirit of peer support are exactly what will help The Christi Center realize our vision where no one has to grieve alone.