The wife of the man who open fired inside a one-room Amish schoolhouse in
Lancaster County seven years ago says her faith and strong relationship with God has given her the
strength to move on.
Marie Monville was married to Charles Roberts when he shot 10 girls, five of
them fatally, before turning the gun on himself on October 2, 2006.
She has since remarried, is raising five children with her new husband, and has written a book entitled “One Light Still Shines” that tells of her journey from the shadows of the West Nickel Mines School.
Monville said all seemed normal when she and her husband put their children on the school bus that morning, but three hours later he called to tell her that
he was never coming home.
“I was trying to wrap my brain around what that could possibly mean,” Monville said. “I said, 'please don't do whatever it is you are going to do. Let's talk about this,' but he said, 'it's too late.' “
Monville said Roberts never recovered from the loss of their first child, who died minutes after a premature birth.
Minutes after his call, she said she heard helicopters and sirens and she knew something bad had happened. The gestures of kindness and forgiveness from the Amish community just hours later stays with her today.
“They came because they were concerned about me and my children and they wanted me to know they have forgiven Charlie, and they were extending grace and compassion,” she said.
Monville said she thinks about the shooting daily, but will not allow it to define who she is.