Survivor of Family Killing Forgives Murderer on Death Row
Indiana County man, Larry “R.J.” Bobish Jr., said he forgives the man who fatally shot his mother, father, and pregnant sister 12 years ago.
During a drug dispute in 2012, Mark Duane Edwards Jr. shot Bobish’s father twice, shot Bobish through the hand into his head, stabbed Bobish five times, shot Bobish’s mother while she slept, and then shot Bobish’s pregnant sister as she screamed.
After Edwards set fire to the house, Bobish was awakened by the flames and crawled to the driveway. Bobish was the only survivor.
Yet, when Bobish heard that Mark Duane Edwards Jr.’s death warrant had been signed, he cried.
“I forgive him, even though my family was taken away from me,” said Bobish, “I know [Edwards] has a son, and I would not want his son to grow up without a family.”
Bobish said he forgave Edwards because, “I believe Jesus died for us. God paid for our sins and gives mercy. If Jesus can do that, I can forgive someone.”
Bobish hopes to communicate his forgiveness to Edwards before his execution.
“The main thing to me is, if he’s going to die, I want to hope he would get saved before it would happen,” Bobish said. “I believe everyone should get a chance to have that happen.”
A petition has been filed to stay the death warrant pending an appeal under the Post Conviction Relief Act.
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Photo credit Ken Piorkowski.