Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Well Deserved

I was going back and forth about writing about this story, only because I became really emotional reading about it and didn't want to inflict that on my friends and family who read here, but I got an email asking me to.

My heart breaks when I read about good people having their lives ripped apart without warning by a stranger they trust who takes advantage of their goodness, but for Tom and Jackie Hawks, it was much worse than that, their lives were taken in the most horrid way and their killers left a close and loving family broken forever.

Beware I say to my friends and family, beware of evil, because it is out there and ready at a moments notice, it is wearing a costume of normalcy and when the real thing is revealed, it may be too late.

Tom and Jackie were a loving couple with children who adored them. In their later years Tom and Jackie shared a dream of living at sea and sailing around on their boat the "Well Deserved".

To realize their dream they took a huge and scary step and sold their home, planning to live out there days on their most beloved boat, the Well Deserved. After two years of living on the water they received news from their son that they were expecting a grandson, Jace. The loving parents and now grandparents decided they wanted more than anything to be a part of Jace's life. They decide to sell their boat and move back to Arizona.

Tom put an ad up selling his boat for $444,000. In response to the ad he met Skylar Deleon, a young "child actor" (he actually only played a small part on the Power Rangers show). Skylar introduced Tom and Jackie to his own wife and 9 month old child. Jackie and Tom were comfortable with the young couple and decided to sell the boat to them.

Skylar asked that he be taken with two of his friends out to sea in order to test the boat out. Along with Skylar came Myron Gardner and Alonso Machain. At first glance all seemed normal, Tom was a large and strong man and I can imagine would never believe the evil they were about to experience or the very real danger they were in.

Once out on the water about an hour away from shore, the group quickly turned on the couple.

First they separated Tom and Jackie.

Myron Gardner a very large man, attacked Tom putting him in a chokehold, while Alonso Machain attacked Jackie, although they both fought hard, eventually they were both overpowered by the group of criminals.

They tied the couple up and forced them to sign transfer papers to Skylar for the boat, as well as give them their bank account numbers and social security numbers while all the while beating them.

Alonso Machain testified yesterday that the couple was left tied and blind folded on their bed and the tape around their mouths became loose enough for him to hear Jackie pleading for her life, saying she did not want to die and that she wanted to see her grandchild, Tom could be heard telling Jackie that everything would be okay.

He was wrong.

Skylar Deleon found a very heavy anchor on the boat and he was going to use it in the most horrible way. He had his team of thugs bring Tom and Jackie up on the deck and tighten their blind folds, he then tied them together and to the anchor and as Alonso testified, Jackie was shaking uncontrollably when suddenly the anchor was thrown overboard and the couple were yanked into the ocean.

I can't imagine the fear and panic that took them into that water. The agony Tom must have felt unable to save himself and his wife.

After the murder of Jackie and Tom, the group drank Tom's beers and went fishing with his fishing rods. Skylar Deleon went so far as to take their video camera and days after he murdered them, he filmed his own family during their thanksgiving dinner, without erasing the footage of Jackie and Tom taken before they died. The camera was found by investigators.

Skylar emptied the couples bank accounts and falsified records to show he purchased their boat days before the murder. His wife cleaned the boat of blood and evidence and once Skylar got caught and his thugs turned against them, he tried to hire people to kill the witnesses against him, showing no remorse for what he had done, to not only Jackie and Tom, but to the Hawk family.

Yesterday, after 4 years, the trial has finally come to the penalty phase. Skylar Deleon is asking for mercy and not to be put to death.

Baby Jace will never know his wonderful grandparents. Tom and Jackie suffered immensely before they died and ultimately losing their lives in the ocean water they so loved. They cried and begged for their lives and offered to give Skylar everything and anything he wanted and still he showed them no mercy. He didn't care about Jackie shivering and asking to please let her live to see her grand baby. He didn't care.

I say there is no reason to show this monster mercy. I say his death will be nothing compared to that of this loving couple and I just wish in this case an eye for an eye was possible and that Tom and Jackie Hawks family would be the ones to tie the anchor around his neck.

Rest in Peace Tom and Jackie Hawks.

Jennifer Deleon, Skylar's wife, just receive life in prison for her role in this horrific scheme.

1 comment:

Mel Kennedy said...

I read this book and also saw the documentary - it was sickening to know this couple were tied to an anchor and thrown into the sea. There is a correction however - the large black guy was called John Kennedy - and from memory I actually believe his middle initial WAS F - he may have been named after the late John F Kennedy, but that is the only thing these two men have in common, it is actually awful for such an evil person to be named after such an inspiring person - but there you go - the story is not about him - but he was the third person on that boat. I don't know who this guy is that you say put a choke hold on Tom Hawks - but it was this guy who did it. He was introduced as the accountant, but he is the least accountant looking person you could get - more like a gang member shoved into a suit that is 2 sizes too small!!