When she was only 7-years-old, Kayla Gissandaner saw her father stabbed in the back and neck. When her father died, she lost her best friend and when she grew up she realized the horrible story of her family: Her own mother had arranged the murder.
Her mother had taken away the father she adored so Kyla, being consumed with anger, stopped visiting her mother in prison.
Now, 18 years after the death of her husband, Kelly Gissendaner is the first woman to be executed in Georgia in the last 70 years.
At 47-years-old, Kelly Gissendaner is sentenced to death because she recruited her lover (Gregory Owen) to kill her husband in 1997. Her execution will take place for 7 p.m. Tuesday. Kelly requested a last meal of Texas fajita nachos, cheese dip and chips and a diet frosted lemonade.
Danny Porter, the district attorney in Georgia’s Gwinnet Country, said: “The nature of the crime justified the state seeking the ultimate penalty. The jury agreed with that. In the years that have intervened, we have had no reason to change our position about that.”
Kelly Gissender came close to execution twice this year. First time, the execution was postponed because of a winter storm and the second time was suspended because of the lethal drug cocktail used by the state. Her friends and family asked for clemency but the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles rejected her application.
Pleading for canceling the execution
Many people agree that Gissendaner has already lived enough and that she has to pay for her heinous deeds. However, Kelly Gissendaner’s children are still pleading for her life. Kayla Gissendaner said: “My dad would not want my mom to be executed, even knowing her role in his murder. He would not want us to endure another devastating loss”.
Gissendaner’s lawyers tried to stop the execution on two separate grounds: the plea for clemency and the lethal injection process.
Kelly Gisssendaner entered a jail cell as an angry, selfish and violent person. After a while, she transformed in a different person. She began to study the Bible and she earned a degree in theology.
Last March, before the execution, Kelly recorded a brief statement for her daughter and sons “I just want to tell my kids that I love them, and I am proud of them. And no matter what happens love does beat out hate.”
Douglas Gissendaner was killed when he was 30 years old.