Abilene murder victim's family talks about domestic abuse dangers

Sonia Trucks

ABILENE, Texas - Soa Olivia Trucks' family said she was a longtime victim of domestic violence, and they want people to see how it can end.

They said they tried to get Trucks help. They were at her house Sunday evening just hours before she was killed trying to get her out of there.

They said they wish they'd done more.

"I failed," said Barbara Rosales, Trucks' mother. "I feel like I failed because my baby's dead."

Trucks was killed Sunday night. Her boyfriend, 45-year-old Manuel Hernandez Talavera, was arrested and charged with her murder. Family members said Trucks' 11-year-old daughter was there at the time and hid. She then walked to a neighbor's house to call 911.

"I just couldn't believe the strength she had to get through it," said Ysidro Rosales, Trucks' brother.

They said Trucks was in an abusive relationship for the last seven months.

"She continued to say he's gonna change," said Danielle Rosales, Trucks' sister. "It's okay. He's not gonna do it anymore."

Danielle Rosales remembers her sister as funny, generous and a great cook. She said Trucks was planning on leaving her boyfriend next week.

"It's inexcusable, and it just really makes you want to work even harder," said Leigh Ann Fry, the executive director of the Noah Project.

The Noah Project's mission is advocating for victims and working to end family violence. Fry said the days leading up to a victim leaving an abuser are statistically the most dangerous.

"There's specific steps we'll help you go through to get out," Fry said. "You know, if nothing else we can call 911 for you. We can ask the police to do a well check and check on you, but we want you to leave. We want you to be safe."

Trucks' family has this message for anyone who suspects their loved one is being abused.

"Keep telling them I'm not leaving until you leave with me," Danielle Rosales said. "You can hate me tomorrow, but today I'm going to make sure you're alive."

If you or someone you care about is in an abusive relationship you can call the Noah Project's Crisis Line at 1-800-444-3551.

They have a staff ready to help and a shelter for victims who need a place to stay.

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