Since 2010, there has been an event on the mountain called “Concert for Rebecca” –a celebration of a beautiful life that features great music, good company, and some very vital information. Perhaps you have heard of the concert or saw a billboard or you even knew people who went or donated. But, perhaps you didn’t know why the Concert for Rebecca was so important to you or someone you love.
Twenty six year old Rebecca Amrowski was murdered on June 19, 2009; the final act of an eight-year pattern of domestic violence. Her family found her in the basement of the home she had shared with her estranged husband, Brian Amrowski, dead from a gunshot wound to the head. Brian Amrowski was apprehended for the theft of Rebecca’s rental car several days later in Nevada, and the evidence against him for Rebecca’s murder was overwhelming.
“She would come to visit with bruises on her face,” recalls her father, Terry Renninger, “and she would always tell us she had walked into the door, that she was just so clumsy. We knew she was lying.”
Rebecca met Brian in the fall of her senior year; she was 17 and he was 22. The relationship immediately caused problems between Rebecca and her parents as she began lying and covering up for the inappropriate relationship. The once straight-A student began skipping school and her grades plummeted. The day she turned 18, Brian picked her up from her parents’ house, along with all her things, and Rebecca moved in with him. She did graduate on time, however, Brian convinced her to change her plans to attend Slippery Rock University and marry him instead. Gradually, Rebecca was isolated from her friends and family.
“She was never allowed to come over for holidays,” relates Terry. “He would flatten the tires on her car so she couldn’t leave. He sugared the gas tank on the new car we bought her. The neighbors witnessed numerous fights where he would throw her out of the house in the middle of winter with no coat and no way to go anywhere. “
Terry and his wife, Theresa, saw the signs happening and tried to convince their daughter to leave Brian, but Rebecca always went back, for reasons only known to her. Theresa called the police to report the abuse as well as the Domestic Violence Center, which could only act if Rebecca came to them herself. Terry even confronted Brian at a July
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