My name is Tina Turk Billiet and I went to High School with Kari her freshman and sophomore years in Gatesville. Kari and I went to church together as well. My father was her pastor. I have many memories of Kari and all of them are of how enegetic and fun she was. I, as well as everyone who has written their memory, also feel very strongly that her death was not by her own hand. It's just a feeling but a very strong one at that.
The memory i have to share is one that involved a youth trip that we took with our church. There were only a couple of us that went on this trip, and that's what made it so fun. We ended up staying in the fellowship hall of a church in Ft. Worth, Tx. It was just for the weekend. Our youth pastor's father was a pastorof this church. The fellowship hall led into the huge sanctuary and we had access to it. One night we were soooo bored that we decided to go exploring. The sunday school rooms were in a basement underneath the sanctuary. The building was built pretty interesting. Well, as you can imagine the entire place was completely dark. We couldn't even see our own hands in front of our faces. After we explored the basement, we ended up in the sanctuary. And that was dark as well. However, we did have the advantage of the red glowing exit's signs on either side of the platform. We decided that it would be a great idea if we all played hide and seek. No we were not babies but I know I felt like one after a couple of minutes of playing the game. Yes, I was a complete wimp. There were only 2 guys with us and the rest were girls, Kari included. Now, if you have ever played this kind of game in a dark sanctuary then you know how scary it could be, especially with 2 guys determined to scare the complete devil out of you. I destincly remember hiding under the sound board for the sound system of the church. This was in the balcony. Yes, this church was that big. Like I said it was in Ft. Worth. With me under the sound board was Kari and another girl that was with us. We were all squashed in there like sardine's and we were all completely soaked with sweat. You really get to know someone real well in that kind situation. All 3 of us did not care because we all had the mind set of not getting caught by one of the guys. That was there mission of course and we were determined not to let them get the best of us. We all know that it's always girls against boys, especially during that time of our lives. I can't remember exactly who won the game but i do remember the 3 of us trying to communicate to one another through sign language. We were trying so hard not to talk and that was very hard for us. Kari kept laughing and it seemed very hard for her to keep quiet. I kept trying to keep her quiet because I did not want to get the you know what scared out of me and I did not want to let the guys win. They had a way of gloating about it when they did get us. this memory was not neccessarily spectacular but it is a memory.
And now, more than ever I am very glad I have it. I have read most of the memories on this web site and I am so thrilled that Kari has touched so many lives. She was a very special and beautiful person. When I last saw her, it was my 10 year high school reunion in Gatesville, at a football game. There were tons of people around and I didn't even see her. The next thing I know my name was being yelled and when I turned around I saw her. I went over to hug her and be introduced to Matt and her oldest daughter. Her daughter was about 2 at the time. I remember this very well because she was literally crawling all over Kari. We started a conversation up and it involved Kari telling me that I was wasting my time on a guy I was dating that we both knew. Looking back, I never dreamed that my last conversation with her would be of her counseling me about some guy. I wish I could go back and replay that conversation and learn more about her life as it was. But in life, we don't get those opportunities. And in hindsight, we wish we could go back.
Kari was your basic enthusiastic, beautiful, encouraging, life loving, devoted and inspiring friend. I feel very blessed to have kinown her, as well as I look forward to seeing her again some day. It breaks my heart to know the kind of pain that she suffered. She never deserved any of it. However, I take comfort in knowing that she is not suffering now. She is now with the one and only man who always loved her so completely and so purely. She is now with Jesus Christ and I know without a doubt that He is holding her close. There is no pain for her now. There is only peace and love, something we all need in this life. And something we, who are left behind, can hold onto. I do hope justice is served, mainly for Kari's girls sake and for Kari's family.
Take care and God Bless. Tina
I babystitted Kari and Adam for many years. She was a wonderful young woman who to me was the epitome of what a strong, good hearted woman should be, even at a young age. We stayed the summer in Lubbock and we three bonded in that little apartment while Mrs. Dulin was working on her master's. Kari and Adam were why I always wanted to have children. It is very hearbreaking to hear about this and to see the family go through this. Kari, you will always be in my heart. Mrs. Dulin, Jim, Adam, and Kari's children, you all are in my deepest prayers. God
bless you and give you strength. Know that you will meet again in a better place. For now, you guys stick together and know you are so deeply loved.