With the list of names came a touching message about the victims’ courage.
Larry Nassar (L) listens to a victim impact statement from Annette Hill during a sentencing hearing. Photo by Scott Olsen/Getty Images.
Following Larry Nassar’s sentencing for his decades-long sexual abuse of more than 150 female gymnasts, the Detroit Free Press used the entirety of its front page to pay tribute to the women who came forward and spoke about their painful victimization at his hands. Nassar used his power and access as a doctor at Michigan State University and for USA Gymnastics to molest young female athletes seeking medical treatment.
Prior to sentencing, Judge Rosemarie Aquilina allowed any victim who wished to speak or prepare statements to do so prior to Nassar’s sentencing. According to Deadspin, the initial list of women slated to make statements totaled 88, but over the course of the past week, more were compelled to speak. By the time a sentence of 40-175 years in prison had been issued for Nassar, 155 women had shared their stories with the court and the public.
With her mother by her side, Helena Weick delivered a victim impact statement. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.
Every one of their names — and in the instances of anonymous statements, victim numbers giving attribution — were listed on the front page of the Detroit Free Press in honor of their courage in coming forward amid the shame, anger, and sadness that Nassar’s actions caused them.
Thursday's front page of the Detroit Free Press. https://t.co/FN0X3Bo9fd— Detroit Free Press (@Detroit Free Press) 1516851509
Accompanying the names was a statement from the Free Press which read:
“These women bravely came forward with their heartbreaking statements, making sure no one would forget what the monstrous doctor who worked at Michigan State University and for USA Gymnastics did to them.”
Tiffany Lopez giving her victim impact statement during Nassar’s sentencing hearing. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.
These women will never forget the pain and suffering they were subjected to. This moving and sincere act from the Detroit Free Press helps ensure that the public never will either, which will hopefully prevent another such atrocity from taking place in the future.