Here’s the thing about Philly – it’s the city of brotherly love and sisterly affection – and sometimes we don’t demonstrate either of those traits. There’s a lot to love about Philadelphia, and I do love this city of mine, yet sometimes it leaves me in tears. And this couldn’t be more true than in this week’s episode about two of Philadelphia’s unknown children.
I know cities all over the world have cold cases, cases of unidentified victims, Jane and John does. Sometimes those cases remain unsolved, and sometimes after years of unrelenting efforts by the police and the public, the victims are identified. In the case of children these stories are that much harder, at least for me, because we are supposed to protect children. Not merely our own but everyone’s children. And for two little souls in Philadelphia, protection was what they needed but never received.
These are the stories of The Girl in the Trunk and the Boy in the Bag. Yeah, we have more than the Boy in the Box. I hate that our city has stories like this, stories of children who are considered to be disposable, tossed out like trash, discarded. These are the stories of Jerell Willis and Aliyah Davis, two children who spent years without names, without families. These are the stories of children who were on the radar of human service organizations before their deaths, yet no action was taken to protect them.
Grab your tissues cause I sure as shit needed some while I recorded. You can find TwistedPhilly on social media. Follow me on Twitter @Twisted_Philly and on Facebook by liking the TwistedPhilly Podcast. Like what you hear? Subscribe, rate and review – it helps other people find the show and helps me keep this dream going. The other way you can help the show is by contributing to the show on Patreon. For a $5 contribution, Patreon supporters will receive an original short story by yours truly. Yeah, I’m a writer too. https://www.patreon.com/user?u=4093396
Frank Bender’s sculptural reconstruction of Jerell Willis, and Jerell’s headstone.
Frank’s sculptural reconstruction of Aliyah Davis.