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Minor league pitcher Blake Bivens mourns the loss of murdered wife, son, mother-in-law — ‘My heart was turned to ash’

2019-08-30

Minor league baseball pitcher Blake Bivens unleashed his grief in a heartfelt Instagram post to his mother-in-law, wife and young son, who were all discovered murdered at a home in Virginia earlier this week.

“Two days ago my heart was turned to ash. My life as I knew it is destroyed. The pain my family and I feel is unbearable and cannot be put into words,” the Montgomery Biscuits player wrote. “I shake and tremble at the thought of our future without them.”

Bivens raced back to Virginia from a road trip earlier this week alongside his team manager, Morgan Ensberg upon hearing the news. The Biscuits, which is affiliated with the Tampa Bay Rays, had a scheduled double header canceled Tuesday in wake of the triple homicide, allegedly carried out by Biven’s 19-year-old brother-in-law, Matthew Bernard.

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Two days ago my heart was turned to ash. My life as I knew it is destroyed. The pain my family and I feel is unbearable and cannot be put into words. I shake and tremble at the thought of our future without them. Emily, my sweetheart, you are the best wife and mother this world has ever seen. You made me into the man I am today and you loved me with all of my flaws. You brought our precious baby boy into this world and made our family complete. Your love and kindness changed countless lives, including mine. My sweet little boy, dada loves you so much! I can’t breathe without you here. I finally understood what love was when you were born and I would have done anything for you. You have changed my life forever, you are my reason why. I long to hold the both of you again in heaven. I’m so glad you are with all your Great-grandmothers now, I know they are eating you up. This earth did not deserve either of you; you were just too wonderful to comprehend. Joan you were the best mother-in-law anyone could ask for. You loved your family more than anyone I’ve ever seen. You raised the most wonderful girl in the world. I’m so glad y’all are still together. You were the best Nana this world has ever seen and I will never forget you. Skip you are a wonderful father and grandfather. We will get through this together as a family. We will not let the devil win! Thank you God for giving me the most wonderful family in the world! I’ve been blessed beyond belief. Thank you to all my family and friends who have reached out to me during this time of sorrow. Thank you @raysbaseball @biscuitbaseball for your support through everything. I am comforted by all the messages and well wishes. I’m not sure what is next for me, but I do know God has a plan even though I can’t see it.

A post shared by Blake Bivens (@blakebbins) on

Authorities on Tuesday discovered the bodies of 62-year-old Joan Denise Jefferson Bernard, 25-year-old Emily Bivens and Cullen Micah Bivens, 14 months, at a residence in Keeling.

Bernard was arrested later the same day following an hours-long manhunt. He was taken into custody after leading officers on chase through a church parking lot while completely naked and remained behind bars Friday.

Bivens in his note, which marks the first time he’s publicly addressed the tragedy, starts out by speaking directly to his wife.

“Emily, my sweetheart, you are the best wife and mother the world has ever seen. You made me into the man I am today and you loved me with all of my flaws. You brought our precious baby boy into this world and made our family complete,” he wrote.

“Your love and kindness changed me.”

He continued on to mourn his infant son, Cullen, and took comfort in the fact that he’s in heaven with his great-grandparents.

“I can’t breathe without you here. I finally understood what love was when you were born and I would have done anything for you. You changed my life forever, you are my reason why. I long to hold both of you again in heaven,” he wrote.

“This earth did not deserve either of you; you were just too wonderful to comprehend.”

Bivens also remembered Joan Bernard as “the best mother-in-law anyone could ask for” and thanked her for letting him join their family.

“You loved your family more than anyone I’ve ever seen. You raised the most wonderful girl in the world,” he said. “I’m so glad y’all are still together. You were best Nana this world has ever seen and I will never forget you.”

A court appearance has not yet been scheduled for his brother-in-law, who was placed on suicide watch following his arrest. Police said it’s still unclear why Bernard killed his mother, sister and nephew and are searching for a motive in the case.

“I’m not sure what is next for me,” Bivens concluded, “but I do know god has a plan even though I can’t see it.”