Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityMurdered man's sister starts non-profit aimed at helping families of murder victims | WPEC
Close Alert

Murdered man's sister starts non-profit aimed at helping families of murder victims

James Barry (WPEC file photo){ }
James Barry (WPEC file photo)
Facebook Share IconTwitter Share IconEmail Share Icon
Comment bubble

The sister of a man murdered in 2016 has started a nonprofit aimed at helping other families facing the same grief.

James Barry was murdered by his girlfriend Melanie Eam at a home in Loxahatchee on November 17, 2016. Detectives say Eam stabbed and killed Barry with a butcher knife after they broke up.

As Barry’s family tried to cope with their loss, they also had to navigate the criminal justice system.

The experience showed Alexandra Barry how little support there is for brothers and sisters of murder victims. She says there is no manual for dealing with the loss of a family member, but she is trying to create one for others after going through it.

“When you have a loved one murdered, your whole life changes,” Barry told CBS 12 News.

The long days in court listening to the gruesome details of the day her brother was stabbed to death by his girlfriend.

“You feel so alone going through this,” she said.

Barry turned to social media to try to connect with others who shared that pain, but also for guidance on how to get through the awful hours in court.

“You are just trying to wrap your head around the crime,” Barry said.

She didn’t find a lot out there, so she started the Siblings of Murdered Siblings. It’s a nonprofit that puts together boxes filled with items that helped her get through it.

“I have some tissues because it is emotional. [And] earplugs so if you don’t want to leave the courtroom and you do not want to listen to the autopsy report [or] you don’t want to listen to the defense. Whatever the case is plug away,” she said.

Barry sends the survivor care packages to other families before they head to court.

Pamela Sturrock's brother was also murdered in 2016. She says the organizations and care packages make people just like her feel less alone.

"It's nice to know that somebody is out there with you because when you have these things with you, it may seem very small but that's someone holding your hand,” said Pamela Sturrock.

Barry includes one item she wishes someone would have given her.

“I have a pamphlet that I’ve typed up myself explain the court process, definitions, my experience and what the law is.”

Barry has found purpose in these packages. She knows it’s something her brother would have supported.

She also makes care packages for families that are not going through the court process in an effort to make a healthy impact on their lives.

"I know at the end of the day my brother would want to do good."

Eam was found guilty of second-degree murder for stabbing and killing Barry. She was sentenced on April 3, 2019, to 50 years in prison. She recently filed an appeal that should be decided by the court later this month.

To learn more about Siblings of Murdered Siblings click here. To join the group on Facebook click here.

Comment bubble

Loading ...