Tapeka’s sons were 10 and 16 when she last hugged them goodbye. The family had been living in south King County; caught in the crossfire between rival street gangs and open drug deals. Tapeka knew that life firsthand, for a time. She also knew that if she didn’t send her boys away, they would more than likely follow the same path.
So she put them on a plane to Georgia to live with their grandmother. In a life filled with pain, that day stands out as one of Tapeka’s most difficult.