Notice! Be clear, like all content on this website, this post is my account, opinion, recollection, and truth as I believe it.
By now most know Austin Vantrease was flatly denied parole. This was his second failed attempt to get out of prison.
I’ll tell everyone what I presented to the Parole Board in a future post. Heck, maybe I’ll just upload my notes that I spoke from. By for today I’ll jump over this and Austin Vantrease’s statement (and curiously timed apology) and get to what I considered the most entertaining. But, for those who are interested, you can read about the hearing from a reporter (Brandy Brubaker) of the Dominion post. She was at the hearing and here is the article.
On behalf of the felon’s support system, Bob Vantrease (Austin’s father), stepped to the podium. I just wasn’t expecting him to be the one chosen to speak for the supporters because of his casual appearance. The best way I can describe my thoughts were he would fit in perfectly at a company picnic. He spoke for only what felt like minutes, but I certainly didn’t have a stopwatch on it. He began by pointing out that Austin is big into nutrition. I’m still trying to find the relevance in this information. He acknowledged our family’s lifestyle. He (what I considered) spun more propaganda, saying Austin has always been consistent in his account and even turned himself in to the police. Well… yes… but… it was only after Austin had his ass pulled out of class by the Morgantown police and was told to report to West Virginia to face the charges.
Bob Vantrease began to discuss how his violent, felon son is being portrayed in the media and social media. Turns out, the Parole Board had something to say about this. To paraphrase, they volunteered their opinion that they think it is foolish how people put out information. That “once it’s out there, it’s there forever”. I’m not sure how Austin’s father took it, but I wonder if he received the same message I did. Namely, statements saying Austin is a scapegoat, Austin was in the wrong place at the wrong time, Austin was wrongfully convicted, Austin is not the only one to blame, and so on can be quite damaging.
I could practical hear testicles retracting. Bob Vantrease abruptly said, “That’s all I have” and returned to his seat.
I’m not sure it was appropriate for Vantrease’s civil suit attorney, Heather Noel, to make a statement. But she did. I’m curious if she sensed just how badly that last statement was received — I characterize it as a crash-and-burn — and was attempting to salvage the situation. Anyhow, it seemed to me that her presentation was entirely based on the premise that Austin was young at the time of the crime and it was fueled by alcohol. Turns out, her contribution appeared to be a HUGE blunder. Why? Because Austin has failed to complete — ah, as I recall, more accurately, even begin — his “Alcohol” class. Doh!
Everyone was removed from the area to allow the Parole Board to deliberate. When we were brought back in it was quick to learn that Vantrease was denied parole. I sat, stoic, until the Vantrease family was escorted from the area. Then…
I cried into my daughter’s hand.
Notice! Be clear, like all content on this website this post is my account, opinion, recollection, and truth as I believe it.
What? No vacation now for poor AV with his family? Thank god. AV is getting what he deserves…actually less, but lets hope he serves ALL TEN YEARS. God Bless Ryan and Family
Gail Doyle says
Like Carla and sooooo many……….. always thinking of all and sending love and strength from NY
Carla Liberty says
Thinking of you all, sending love from across town. SHSP, NGA <3
To the Diviney family from a first time poster….
You are all an amazing family, and Ryan has more courage than thids collective Delaware clan could ever comprehend.
Words far fall short in expressing how very sorry I am for this terrible crime against your son.
Please though keep in mind what Hemmingway tells us….
“The sun also rises. And, one day the sun will rise for you, and you will feel reborn. And You will be.
Ken, I know how emotionally taxing this has been for you and your family. Once again, you, Sue and Kari made sure the truth about the trauma inflicted upon Ryan and your family was clearly communicated to the West Virginia Parole Board and to the public.
It is important for people to grasp that this kind of savage violence is plain unacceptable.
How crass, unfeeling and sickeningly glib some people can be who have never had their lives forever altered in such a horrific way. For such caustic souls the only way they could ever fathom your daily pain and struggle would be for them to experience it themselves.
Thankfully, the number of compassionate and ethical people who make up Team Diviney far exceed the selfish dolts who lack the capacity to understand the atrocity committed by VanTrease and May.
Team Diviney continues to stand behind you and your family more than ever, Ken. Each one of you is an inspiration to us. You have our utmost respect.
Sending love, hugs, prayers abiding and faith always
Ann H Tearle says
God bless Team Diviney– You warm my heart, you always have –SHSP NGA ever. Ryan will always, always be relevant.
Boyd Tinsley says
Austin deserves his 10 year sentence, and probably more. It’s some devil. Some angel. Stuck inside of him.
Butch Taylor says
anyone seen the bridge?
Jen Lovelace says
The simple fact of over 150,000 supporters keeping Austin in Prison and a paltry 578 wanting him to be released speaks volumes. You did your job as a father, once again exceptionally! Standing up for Ryan when he is not able. I love your whole family and cannot wait until I am able to see Ryan again! Love, Jen
Carter Beauford says
Justice for Ryan is key. It’s what we want. But we need is all around we. We take a sip, sit back, and relax. Smoke our minds. Make us feel high for a time.
Jeff Coffin says
Congrats Diviney. Met you and your family at a fundraiser years back Ken. Hello again, its been too long. Too long too long.
David J. Matthews says
Was AVT a fool to think, was he a fool to think that they would take him home. Was I a fool to think at all?
Warren Haynes says
Tragedy for both families. Praying for everyone! Hate was just a legend, And war was never known. The people worked together and they lifted many stones.
David J. Matthews says
Great news Ken! Glad to hear it. I do my best for you. Come and relax now, leave your troubles down, no need to bear the weight of worries, just let them all fall away.
I am praying for your family as you continue to continue justice for Ryan and your family. I pray for a miracle on Ryan’s behalf. God bless you all!!
Laura Lee says
~~The BEST news I’ve heard all day~~!! Continued prayers for Ryan’s recovery !! <3 Gotta Love This Strong Family <3
Will Nier says
Fantastic news. My prayers were answered. Justice is working. My prayers continue for Ryan’s healing..
Just wanted to say i have been following Ryans story from over here in the UK it touched my heart and when i read that “HE” was up for parole i felt sick….i followed through Karis fb page a shared her posts trying to get everyone i knew to read Ryans story. As the days went by to the parole hearing i had everything crossed and when i read that it had been denied i let out a “yes get in” and punched the air. You are an amazing family that is the only words i can find….lots of love from over here in the UK ♥♥♥
My prayers are for Ryan’s complete recovery!!! Kudos to a passionate sister and great dad for fighting the good fight! (loved the “Doh!”)
So excited for small victories! If he were really sorry and if he was a man, Austin would accept the terms of and serve the maximum sentence of 10 years.
Melissa Presley Secco says
Mike F. says
Great news!! Keep this thug off the streets!
“Why? Because Austin has failed to complete — ah, as I recall, more accurately, even begin — his “Alcohol” class. Doh!” — what a colossal band of jackwagons in that group.
Mike Mistick says
I am very pleased that Austin was denied parole yet again. Ryan and your family suffer day in and day out from this pointless and horrific act. I do not think any period of a jail sentence can ever be enough punishment for Austin Vantrease. I really admire your unconditional love you have for your son, and the passion you possess to bring justice to these horrible young men. I live in Fairfax, VA with my fiance both of us being part of the Moutaineer family. If you ever need anything, please let us know. Best wishes to Ryan, and your entire family.
Cassia Scott says
Ryan will ALWAYS be relevant. Praise the Lord he was denied. I can’t say I understand your sense of bitter sweetness but, I know the feeling I get now that another parole hearing has passed and he again has been denied. I remember first reading of Ryan, I was looking up info for Morgantown so my son, a junior in H.S. could attend WVU, I instantly went into Mom or Dad mode and said “no MoTown for my son”. 4 years later my son is preparing to start his Junior yr at our beloved WVU and I am very proud to say he and his friends walk/run for Ryan and attend benefits for Ryan. I planted his initial knowledge of Ryan because I read the nightmare that Ryan has lived but, they gladly keep Ryan RELEVANT all on their own because he’s a Mountaineer and he’s their brother. Ryan wasn’t raised in WV but he is a WV son and we love him. Give him a hug, let him know we love him and will always make sure he is Relevant!!
AV is his own worst enemy. Glad you made it home safe & sound! “shooting for 300,000”
Ann McGowan says
You are the best dad. Ryan and Kari are so lucky to have you.
Oh my god. I busted out in laughter over the testicles but now I sit here crying. My heart is broken that you have to fight this battle. It sucks so badly, but thank you for keeping him in jail to protect others from his violence.
Justice for Ryan!