The topic of Domestic violence is too real for too many Coastal Bend families.
Today at Del Mar West campus, survivors shared their stories in hopes to educate and empower.
Tammy Willett says she was a victim of domestic violence in her early thirties.
"Domestic violence changes everything." said Willett, a survivor of domestic abuse and speaker at the Summit on Domestic Violence. "I'm not who i used to be,"
8 years after leaving her own abuser, her 22 year-old daughter, Brandy, was killed in an act of domestic violence.
"With every punch to the face, punch to the back of the head that I received, a piece of who I was fell away. When Brandy was murdered, a huge piece of me died with her."
Tammy said with the right resources and the help and love of others, she was able to pick up the pieces and keep going.
"I am walking living proof that there is life," Tammy told us. "I don't even like the word survivor anymore. I'm not a survivor. Surviving means just getting through the bad stuff. I'm a thriver. I'm prospering. So for any victim out there; don't give up and don't lose hope."
That's why the Nueces County District Attorney's Office joined forces with other agencies and community leaders to make this summit happen. The educational seminar was free and open to the public, with keynote speakers and several other powerful victim testimonies.
"So that was really our seminal focus this year, was getting everybody at the table," Assistant District Attorney Matt Manning said. "Not only the people who provide the resources but the people who need the resources and the people at large."
214th District Court Judge Inna Klein believes the conversation on domestic violence has grown, but she says there is more work to be done.
"I think it's out now, Judge Klein said. "I'm hoping that people going through this process will be engaging others in this conversation. once the conversation starts, we are already winning half of the war."