JUPITER (CBSMiami) – Six-year old Makayla Sitton loved to sing. But her angelic voice was silenced four-years ago when she was murdered in a Thanksgiving day massacre at her home in Jupiter.
Her grandmother and twin cousins were killed that night too when estranged cousin Paul Mehrige pulled out a gun.
“He just opened fire,” her father Jim Sitton, remembered. “We were like fish in a barrel.” “We had already put Makayla to bed,” he said. “As he left, he just stepped into her room and shot her while she was in her bed.”
Jim and Muriel Sitton are Makayla’s parents. For them, Thanksgiving has been difficult since that day, every day has been tough. “I used to say our house used to be a home,” Jim said, “full of little girl giggles, but then after the murder it was just empty, it was quiet, no music, no laughter.”
The laughter and giggles are back now, thanks to Natalia, Jim and Muriel’s little girl. At nearly two- years old, she changed their lives again. “The Lord, in his grace, just gave us this blessing of another child again, that has gone above and beyond what we ever hoped. So we’re very thankful.”
But this Thanksgiving, The Sittons have even more to look forward to. “Well this year we’re grateful for…” Jim said laughing while holding up a picture of a sonogram. “Yesterday on the 26th, the exact four-year anniversary, ”angelversary” as some call it, we saw the heartbeat of our new child for the first time.” Jim and Muriel are expecting another child, a little girl.
Makayla’s memory will always be alive in the Sittons hearts and minds. Jim and Muriel rely on their faith to get them through each day. And now with new laughter in their home and more to come, they once again look forward to another day and what lies ahead. “There’s a whole new chapter, new direction, new things in store for us,” said Muriel. “It’s just reaffirming to us that God’s not finished with us yet.”
The baby is due in July.
The Sittons are trying to come up with a name that will honor and remember both Makalya and Muriel’s mom Raymonde.