Walking a Mile In Her Shoes To Help Raise Awareness
“Do you need help?” was all Sharon Weir said between bursts of laughter. “Nope.” Grady County Sheriff Jim Weir grunted as he slid his foot into a shiny red, patent leather high heel shoe. Sheriff Weir got the first shoe on okay but changed his tune when he tried to keep his balance and get the second one on, so he leaned on Sharon for help. For an ex-Army bomb squad technician and secret service agent who protected three presidents, he didn’t do too badly maneuvering in four-inch stiletto shoes.
Sheriff Weir and District Attorney Jason Hicks, who both endorse Marsy’s Law for Oklahoma SQ 794, invited our team to take part in their “Together We Heel” event. It’s held every year in honor of domestic violence awareness month to raise money for the Intervention and Crisis Advocacy Network (ICAN), which provides domestic violence prevention services in Chickasha.
Hicks, Weir, police officers, firefighters, EMSA paramedics, city leaders and even the men’s basketball team from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma all walked a mile through downtown Chickasha in heels for the event.
Alongside first responders were dozens of people all wanting to be a part of something fun to help crime victims and, in a funny way, bring awareness to a serious issue. Oklahoma is 15th in the nation for the number of women killed by men, and domestic violence is one of the leading indicators that child abuse also is taking place in a home.
One group stood out among all the uniforms and red high heels because all 33 members of this group were wearing lime green. The Wiles family wears lime green at every awareness event. It was their daughter Alyssa’s favorite color. Alyssa, who was only 14, was murdered during a domestic violence incident. She had broken up with a 16-year-old boy she was dating. When she wouldn’t take him back, he broke into the Wiles home and stabbed Alyssa to death when she slept in her bed. Now the family has dedicated their lives to educating kids and their parents about dating violence prevention. They are also big supporters of Marsy’s Law for Oklahoma.
Jason Hicks and his team said the Together We Heel event was a huge success. They raised more than $16,000 to help the women and children at ICAN. They also sent a strong message that Chickasha won’t tolerate domestic violence and we should all walk a mile in crime victims’ shoes to show our support.