BURLINGTON, Connecticut, U.S.A. — Heather Gavette’s little dog, Brenda, is still waiting on her bed for her to come back.
But she never will.
Gavette’s body was found Thursday afternoon in the trunk of her brother’s car.
Derek Gavette, 18, was charged shortly after with the murder of his 15-year-old sister.
After learning of Heather’s death, Christina Lukaszewski sobbed, “She was my best friend.”
Lukaszewski said Heather never really got along with her brother. They fought all the time, she said.
Lukaszewski said Health would often tell she could not stand her brother. Derek was the only family member she ever complained about, Lukaszewski said.
Derek would have occasional mood swings, Lukaszewski said. She said he sometimes got very angry.
Heather and Derek did not talk frequently with each other, conversing only after school, and even then only to sum up the events of the day.
Denise Favette knew how her children felt about each other, but thought nothing of it, Lukaszewski said. Heather’s mother thought their brawls were something normal that happens often between siblings, she said.
Lukaszewski spoke with Heather’s mother late Thursday. With Heather dead and Derek behind bars, Denise Gavette is confused and not sure what her next step should be, Lukaszewski said.
Lukaszewski hopes Heather will be remembered for her funny and outrageous personality.
Of many activities Heather enjoyed, her favorite was polka dancing.
Lukaszewski said she went dancing with Heather every weekend. Heather was a very good dancer, she said, adding that Heather met many older people at the dances who became her friends.
Lukaszewski said Heather was a good student whose favorite subject in school was biology. Heather dreamed of working with animals in a zoo when she grew up, her friend said.
Lukaszewski said Heather’s 6-year-old dog Brenda, the size of a cat, always followed her around the house.
After checking out the refrigerator when she got home from school, Heather would bring her dog down from her bedroom, Lukaszewski said. She said Heather enjoyed taking Brenda out for walks and spending time with her.
Since Heather disappeared last week, Lukaszewski said, the dog has stayed in her friend’s room, waiting for her return.
When they weren’t together, the two friends spent a lot of time talking on the phone, partly because Heather had a phone in her bedroom.
Lukaszewski said Heather played loud music on the radio and danced around her house in the morning while getting ready for school.
“She was my best friend,” Lukaszewski said. “I don’t know what I’m going to do.”
Bryan Pena is a Reporter for Youth Journalism International. First published in The Bristol Press.