Family of former KU soccer player killed in domestic violence incident speaks out

Family of former KU soccer player killed in domestic violence incident speaks out

The family of a former University of Kansas soccer player, who prosecutors say was killed by her partner is speaking out, sharing memories of Regan Gibbs and a warning for anyone who suspects domestic violence. A loving daughter, sister, friend and teammate. “Regan brought passion and kindness to everyone she met and everything she did,” said her mother, Kristin Gibbs. That’s how she and the rest of Regan’s family want the former KU goalie to be remembered.She and Regan’s four younger sisters traveled to Lawrence from Arizona after they got the devastating news of her death. Police say she was killed in an act of domestic violence Monday night. “In her lifetime, Regan willingly gave all that she had to bring joy to others,” said Regan’s sister Madelyn. The family is still grappling with the news of Regan’s death, after police say Chad Marek took her life in their Lawrence apartment. Her mother says the two were not legally married, though Lawrence police say they were living together as husband and wife. Once Chad and Regan were together, her mother noticed concerning behavior. “Her phone was suddenly not working. Conversations were limited to his phone but on speaker, no video allowed,” she said, “and his control over her became clear during the one and only time we met him.”She pleaded with others to be aware of red flags like isolation and control.“He manipulated her through her faith. He slowly isolated her from people who expressed concern,” Kristin said. “I am sure the many people who have had a loved one involved in a similar situation can relate to the frustration of seeing it happening feeling helpless but never expecting this kind of tragic ending.”She stressed the importance of intervention if you see warning signs.“Don’t ignore them, please. Don’t ignore any of them. Go emphatically after that warning,” she said. “I hope and pray somebody is helped through this.”Regan’s family says she always puts others first.“She reached out to new students in school just to make sure they felt welcome and were not alone,” Kristin said, as her voice filled with emotion.“Regan was genuinely interested in getting to know you,” said her sister, Ashlyn Gibbs. “She didn’t care what you looked like or what other people thought. She saw the good in everyone.”Those qualities fueled her passion for helping the homeless and those with mental health challenges. She had worked in behavioral health at a hospital in Arizona and was planning to start PA school. Ashlyn said despite the unthinkable loss, Regan’s light still shines.“He will not take her away or the good that she did,” she said. Regan’s sister Madelyn Gibbs says although she lost her best friend, she believes “that she was and is finally at peace, and that her voice and her memory would live on in the people she touched.” Chad Marek is charged with first-degree murder. He’s being held on $1 million bond. A scheduling hearing is set for May 24.

The family of a former University of Kansas soccer player, who prosecutors say was killed by her partner is speaking out, sharing memories of Regan Gibbs and a warning for anyone who suspects domestic violence.

A loving daughter, sister, friend and teammate. “Regan brought passion and kindness to everyone she met and everything she did,” said her mother, Kristin Gibbs. That’s how she and the rest of Regan’s family want the former KU goalie to be remembered.

She and Regan’s four younger sisters traveled to Lawrence from Arizona after they got the devastating news of her death. Police say she was killed in an act of domestic violence Monday night.

“In her lifetime, Regan willingly gave all that she had to bring joy to others,” said Regan’s sister Madelyn.

The family is still grappling with the news of Regan’s death, after police say Chad Marek took her life in their Lawrence apartment. Her mother says the two were not legally married, though Lawrence police say they were living together as husband and wife.

Once Chad and Regan were together, her mother noticed concerning behavior. “Her phone was suddenly not working. Conversations were limited to his phone but on speaker, no video allowed,” she said, “and his control over her became clear during the one and only time we met him.”

She pleaded with others to be aware of red flags like isolation and control.

“He manipulated her through her faith. He slowly isolated her from people who expressed concern,” Kristin said.

“I am sure the many people who have had a loved one involved in a similar situation can relate to the frustration of seeing it happening feeling helpless but never expecting this kind of tragic ending.”

She stressed the importance of intervention if you see warning signs.

“Don’t ignore them, please. Don’t ignore any of them. Go emphatically after that warning,” she said. “I hope and pray somebody is helped through this.”

Regan’s family says she always puts others first.

“She reached out to new students in school just to make sure they felt welcome and were not alone,” Kristin said, as her voice filled with emotion.

“Regan was genuinely interested in getting to know you,” said her sister, Ashlyn Gibbs. “She didn’t care what you looked like or what other people thought. She saw the good in everyone.”

Those qualities fueled her passion for helping the homeless and those with mental health challenges. She had worked in behavioral health at a hospital in Arizona and was planning to start PA school.

Ashlyn said despite the unthinkable loss, Regan’s light still shines.

“He will not take her away or the good that she did,” she said.

Regan’s sister Madelyn Gibbs says although she lost her best friend, she believes “that she was and is finally at peace, and that her voice and her memory would live on in the people she touched.”

Chad Marek is charged with first-degree murder. He’s being held on $1 million bond. A scheduling hearing is set for May 24.

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