‘Paw Paw, when am I going to stop hurting?’ 9-year-old’s last words to Grandpa while she bled out after he had just shot her and Grandma
A suicidal South Carolina man was sentenced to life in prison for killing his bedridden wife and their 9-year-old granddaughter, saying he wanted to spare them the pain of living without him.
Ronald Gregory shot his wife, 71-year-old Barbara Gregory, and his granddaughter Mia Rodgers, as they slept in the early hours of March 21. Gregory told detectives that Mia survived for an hour, but instead of calling for help, Gregory held Mia as she bled to death, prosecutor Kevin Brackett said. The prosecutor recounted some of the girl’s last words as people in the courtroom gasped and sobbed Monday.
‘Paw paw, when am I going to stop hurting?’ Brackett said, quoting the girl.
After his granddaughter died, Gregory went to the bank and withdrew money. In multiple withdrawals in the three days before and after the murders he took out a total of $40,000. The former power company employee then texted his daughter Kristie, Mia’s aunt, that there would be money for her should anything happen to him. He then called 911, asked the operator to send police to his home and shot himself twice in the chest with the same 9 millimeter pistol he used to kill his wife and Mia. But he survived.
Gregory, 68, pleaded guilty but mentally ill to two counts of murder. He was sentenced to life without parole.
The struggles in the court systems between families custody over a child is the most unnatural situation to deal with. It is unfortunate Gregory’s wife didn’t recognize the deep depression her husband was on as things may have been different for this little girl.