In Sarasota, Florida, the handwritten notebook containing a dying declaration from Brain Laundrie, the 23-year-old who confesses to killing his fiancée and injuring her in the Wyoming wilderness, provides a painful insight into his state of mind.
The sprawling, eight-page story is a combination of self-revelation, a declaration of love, and ultimately, a farewell letter.
“I terminated her existence, I believed it was compassionate, that it is what she desired,” he pens.
The cause of death was determined to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound, and the remains of Brian Laundrie, who disappeared on September 17, 2021, were eventually found near his home in North Port, close to Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park.
The notepad was discovered within a water-resistant pouch. The subsequent text is the unaltered transcript:
I can’t live without you. I’ve lost every day we could’ve spent together. But we’ve lost our future. I’m even more excited for the future, as we’ll be making memories every step of the way. I wish I could be talking to you right now, by your side. I can’t live without you, every holiday we could’ve spent together.
I’ll never go trekking with TJ. I adored you more than anything.
I will always love you, as I close my eyes, I think of lying on the roof of the van, falling asleep to the mesmerizing sight of a meteor shower at the crystal-clear geyser. I can’t bear to look at our photos to recall those wonderful times because it reminds me of why I can’t move on.
If you were flipping through old cards, looking at photos from our life together, and reading Gabs’ journal, you wouldn’t want to live a day without waking up to her, knowing that every day is a new opportunity.
I apologize to all those who will be impacted by this, Gabby was the person I loved the most. However, I am aware that she was adored by many.
I’m extremely apologetic to her family because I adore them. I would regard her younger siblings as my closest companions.
I apologize to my family; this news has come as a shock to them and is causing immense sorrow.
It is not easy for them to do this, please. My nephews to an aunt, a new daughter to my mother. If they loved her as much as me, not more.
This is an unexpected tragedy that has occurred. It was too dark and cold to see before we rushed back to our car, trying to cross the creek where the streams spread. I couldn’t find her for a moment, and I could barely see or hear anything. I shouted her name.
She had been freezing for too long, so I started a fire and spooned her close to the heat. I knew I couldn’t safely carry her, so I stumbled towards the car in shock, my knees buckling. As far as I could, I carried her down the stream towards the car, knowing she was soaking wet and freezing from the dropped temperature. We had just come from the blazing hot national parks in Utah. She was gasping for air, heavily breathing, and I found her in a cold, freezing state.
It was painful to see her begging for it to end, painful to see her gasping, violently shaking between lapses, barely able to speak. She made continuous sounds of pain while I carried her. She was shaking violently and freezing, her wrist and feet hurting. Eventually, a small bump appeared on her forehead. I couldn’t tell her how much she was hurting me, and I pulled Gabby out of the water. I knew we were across the creek, but I had no idea how far it was. I wanted to take her out of the cold and back to the car, but first, I should have started a fire. I realized that I should have started a fire at that time, but I couldn’t.
As she would fall into slumber, I would awaken her, concerned that she should not close her eyes in case she had sustained a head injury.
She would wake up in pain, start her whole painful cycle again, all the while angry that I was the one waking her up.
I don’t know the extent of Gabby’s injuries, but she was in excruciating agony. I thought she might freeze and sleep outside, and I was worried that the fire would engulf me. Additionally, I was afraid that she wouldn’t allow me to cross the creek.
I ended her existence. I believed it to be a compassionate act. It is what she desired. I now realize the errors I committed. I was filled with panic. I was overwhelmed by shock. I chose to remove her pain from that moment onwards. I was unaware of how I could continue without her.
I left by accident, even though I’m certain they would have preferred if I hadn’t. But I didn’t want to spend time with them over time, so I decided not to go. T.J. James and I had planned to drive up north, but I changed my mind. Instead, I hurried home to spend time with my family.
I apologize for being the most talkative girl in the world. I understand that my loquaciousness can make life harder for my family. Please know that I am truly sorry for the loss that everyone has experienced. I deeply cherish every moment we could have had together, but unfortunately, our entire future has been lost. I cannot bear to live another day without her. It’s not because I fear punishment, but because I feel like my life is ending.