Debra Gindorf, a Zion, IL mother found guilty but mentally ill after the deaths of her two children in 1985, has had her sentence commuted by Illinois Governor Quinn. She should be released mid-May. Interestingly enough, May was just declared by Governor Quinn as Postpartum Mood Awareness Month.
Gindorf’s clemency petition was one of 18 acted upon by Quinn. No comment is available from the Governor’s office as they feel it speaks for itself.
A Committee to Free Gindorf has been working tirelessly for years. One of Debra’s biggest supporters has been Carole Blocker who stated in 2006 “They shouldn’t have to spend their lives in prison just because they’re sick.”
This is not the first application for clemency from Gindorf; she’s been denied three times.
After a divorce, Gindorf found herself on welfare, alone with two young children. Depression set in and shortly after the birth of her son she had started hearing voices. Gindorf did not plan to harm her children, she was planning on killing herself. Tragically, the children awoke as she was writing letters and had already downed sleeping pills and alcohol. She states in a 2004 interview that “There really was no concern that what I was doing was wrong or anything like that. It was just all about us leaving,” Gindorf said in a prison interview with The Associated Press.
She would like to educate others about postpartum illness once released. Gindorf knows she cannot change the past but perhaps she can change the future for other mothers by preventing further tragedy through education.
I have often thought about Debbie over the years and the great injustice that she suffered over the loss of her children. I am so happy that she is finally able to be released and start fresh. When Debbie is released please let her know that
Becki Pope Connelly remembers her from the time she used to come to my parents house as a teenager, and is so thankful the justice is finally being served and she is able be free again. If there is anything I can do to help her please feel free to contact me via email. My mom is overjoyed as well that Debbie will finally be free.
Becki pope connelly
It is a blessing to finally see pople not opposing her release. There are so many negative blogs out there about it. Lots of hatred from poeple who have no idea what the facts are.
I can assure you kind wishers that Debra is going to be fine. She is coming to my home and will have a lot of support to help her readjust. It will not be easy for her after so many years though.
She is elated over the news right now and is waiting for the big day.
she truely is a good person and the governor did make the right decision. Thanks for all of your kind words and wishes. I will show them to her upon her release.
Wow – thanks for posting this. I’d love to meet her as I don’t live too far from her. I wonder if she has any family to support her upon her release? If you have any other info let me know. Thanks Lauren