Bill Zeller emailed a suicide note to his friends, explaining “I have the urge to declare my sanity and justify my actions, but I assume I’ll never be able to convince anyone that this was the right decision.” Bill Zeller's suicide note quickly went viral.
Like millions of others who only met Bill Zeller through the intense emotional pain and suffering he courageously shared in his final words, I cried for him, for what he endured and for the tragic waste of his life.
What Bill Zeller revealed in his final words was that he had been repeatedly raped as a child. He describes in detail the lifelong and devastating impact these terrible crimes had on his life. He concluded he could never escape the "darkness" that enveloped him except through death. His words are heart wrenching. His pain palpable.
When I read Bill Zeller's suicide note, I recall thinking sadly how much good he could have accomplished for other victims of childhood sexual abuse by telling his story from a podium instead of a grave. Unquestionably, Bill Zeller made the wrong choice in taking his life, but his suicide note warrants another reading because he speaks not just to the unbearable pain and lifelong damage he suffered; he also speaks for all the victims of childhood sexual abuse including the boys longtime Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky molested and raped.