Jennifer Ann Crecente

Jennifer Ann Crecente and her proud father

Jennifer Ann Crecente

Jennifer Ann Crecente was a high school honors student that was murdered by an ex-boyfriend on February 15, 2006. Our group will keep Jennifer Crecente's memory alive through good works and by fighting Teen Dating Violence.

My daughter, Jennifer Crecente died the day after Valentine's Day, 2006.

She didn't die from a childhood disease and wasn't killed in a car accident.

She was murdered by a classmate.

Somebody that she'd grown to know, trust and eventually date. She was murdered by somebody that had problems. Problems that at the invincible age of 18, Jennifer thought that she could overcome.

Don't you remember? In high school we are immortal.

But for Jennifer Crecente and those that love her we know all too well how very painfully mortal we are. Abuse isn't a "very special episode" of our favorite television show. Problems don't disappear during the commercial break.

Good, decent people that want to help out a friend are sometimes murdered in cold blood.

And the bogeyman isn't always under the bed.

Sometimes he's the kid that lives down the street.

Our organization is going to do everything that it can to ensure that no other parent has to be awakened in the middle of the night by friends pounding on the door. No more groggy-eyed astonishment. No more shocked out-of-body emptiness.

No more realization that nothing will ever be the same again. Nothing.

We will educate young people about danger signs. About warning signals. About indications that they are in above their heads and not immortal.

And then we'll point them in the right direction - toward the many groups that offer assistance, counseling and protection. We will not rest until every young person has been educated about an epidemic that impacts over 20% of our teenage population*.

Ignorance will not be an excuse. We won't stop until this knowledge is as fundamental as looking both ways when you cross the street.

I can't bring my baby back. Jennifer is gone, and as powerless as I may be about that, I refuse to allow this to continue unabated. Please join our forum on Teen Dating Violence so that you can join in conversations about this worldwide problem. We are a young organization but have ambition, passion and an energy borne of desperation.

Please keep Jennifer in your hearts and prayers. I sincerely wish you could have known her.

Drew Crecente, Founder & Executive Director
Jennifer Ann's Group
(and first and foremost, proud dad of Jennifer Crecente)

* U.S. Department of Justice

A brief note, written years later:

I wrote the above shortly after Jen's murder.

Although some things have changed since writing this, the need for change has not. Nor has the need to be heard, to be understood, and to be believed.

I would write this differently today than I did then.

But I will honor that voice-from-then.

I will leave it as I wrote it.

You can donate online via PayPal if you believe in our work, would like to support us, and are in a position to do so: