From the moment the Illinois State Police and St. Clair County Coroners arrived on my doorstep at 5:30 on Friday, November 23, until this past Wednesday, I have not spoken to the media about my daughters. I understood the media had a job to do; however, this was personal - these were my daughters, not a news story. This was a very devasting event - we had enough to deal with without having to deal with questions and cameras and spotlights.
Ironically, the media had been covering the accident all day on the local channels. I never saw it, because I was getting out the Christmas decorations so we could decorate when they got home, and I was watching a What Not To Wear Marathon. When I started calling people to tell them about their deaths, many asked if it was the accident they'd seen on TV.
However, because of the upcoming fundraiser, I decided, after consulting with their father, that I would do an interview talk about the girls and fundraiser. The reporters agreed to not question me on the accident or the trials.
I'm glad that I did the interviews. I was able to personalize Jessica and Kelli, and it gave me a venue to tell people just how fantastically fabulous these children were while they were alive. I don't think I would have been able to do it any earlier. I guess the timing was right.
I'm thankful that Maddy was included too. I don't want her to feel excluded because the focus is all on Jessica and Kelli. She was so excited to see herself on TV. She told her daycare provider that since I was famous because I was on TV, that she should be famous too. I love how her mind works.
I just wanted to say that Leisa Zigman from Channel 5 was wonderful (and soooo thin!). She put me at ease and I was so comfortable with her. Ray Preston from Channel 4 was very kind to me; Shirley Washington from Channel 2 told me I was gorgeous (bonus!) and Jeff Bernthal from Channel 11 was taller than I expected. The camera guys from these channels also did a great job of making me look less pasty and moon-faced - thanks guys!
You can see the full interviews on the websites for Channel 4 and Channel 5. They are long, but the shorter newscasts stories are on there as well. The response from the interviews has been great - I've had a lot of people visit the website and request tickets or donate items. Please try to make it out - we still have tickets available.
I'll be talking with KMOX today, which will be broadcast around 3:45 today. Give it a listen if you can.