A Second Chance at Life: Local veteran tells her story of life after surviving suicide attempt
Author: Bary Roy
September 9, 2019
ROUND ROCK, Texas — Editor's note: This article contains depictions of sexual assault and suicide. Reader discretion is advised.
Vivianne Pearson is a United States Army veteran who proudly followed in the footsteps of her family at Fort Jackson in South Carolina.
It was while she was stationed in Fort Jackson that she says she went to get a drink with her sergeant, someone she barely knew, when he forced himself on to her.
Almost 11 years after a cry from her daughter interrupted her suicide attempt, a local vet is moving forward in life as a successful business owner in Round Rock.
"I was cornered," she said. "I was just fighting this particular sergeant off of me. It was the most scariest, intimidating, anxious experience that I've ever had to experience because I'm thinking to myself, 'Your wife is even here.'"
Pearson said that assault in 2006 shaped her military experience. She said the sergeant who assaulted her made it a point to make her life unbearable after a report was filed.
“There was a report made about the party. He thought I reported him,” she said. “But in all honesty, I didn’t. Not at all. My life was a living hell from day one after that.”
In retrospect, Pearson said she knows keeping her silence was a mistake. She believes that men and women who in those situations need to speak up and know there’s no shame in doing so.
“Unfortunately, I kept silent,” she said. “I didn’t talk about it, but I was only hurting myself internally.”
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