My name is Steve Rodgers. My father, Charles Duane Rodgers Jr., committed suicide three days ago after being charged for raping a child. I was not named in his obituary. This is because my father had an affair and subsequently left my mother and her three children when I was very young.
He found faith after he left my mother. He quickly cut us out of his life and the last time I saw him was when I was 16. At first I was thankful that I was not mentioned in the obituary. Who would want to be associated with a man accused of such terrible acts? But I have a 9-year-old daughter, and the thought of anyone in this world hurting her led me to realize that hiding from what my father did helps nothing.
My father killed himself to try to avoid the consequences of his horrible actions. He spent his life hiding behind the disguise of a religious man, hurting those he came into contact with. I write this today to ensure that the victim’s voice is not silenced because he is gone.
There will never be a trial. So let this be the way he is remembered. I will always remember the pain that he caused my family and now the pain that he caused others. I hope with his death the victim and anyone else he may have hurt can begin to heal by knowing he can’t do it again.
Pearl City, Hawaii