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Thursday
Dec092010

Dr. William Petit Hopes to Be Reunited With His Family in Heaven

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(PLAINVILLE, Conn.) -- Dr. William Petit, the sole survivor of the deadly home invasion that claimed the lives of his wife and two daughters, said Thursday he did not end his own life because he didn't want to risk not being reunited with them in heaven.

"I thought of the afterlife and if I was going to meet up with my family," said Petit in his first interview since his family's killer, Steven Hayes, was sentenced to death last month. "I thought that [if I killed myself], maybe I would never meet up with them again, and I wasn't willing to take that chance."

Petit, speaking to Oprah Winfrey in his parent's Connecticut home, where he has lived since his own was burned in the 2007 assault on his family, said that his relationship with God is at a "stand off" since his family was killed.

"I believe in God, but I was pretty angry with him for a long time," said Petit. "I've talked to a lot of smart people who have told me it's okay to be angry with God. God can take it."

Petit's wife, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, and the couple's two daughters, 17-year-old Hayley and 11-year-old Michaela, were all killed during a July 2007 home invasion carried out by Hayes and his alleged accomplice, Joshua Komisarjevsky.

Hayes is awaiting execution on Connecticut's death row and Komisarjevsky's trial is expected to begin in February.

Hayes was convicted of raping and strangling Hawke-Petit. Komisarjevsky is charged with sexually assaulting Michaela. Both Michaela and Hayley died after they were tied to their beds, doused with gasoline and the house was set on fire.

Petit says closure will never be possible and he doesn't consider forgiveness an option, either.

"I don't think you can forgive ultimate evil," he said. "You can forgive someone who stole your car. You can forgive someone who slaps you in the face. You can forgive someone who insulted you. You can forgive someone who caused an accident. I think forgiving the essence of evil is not appropriate."

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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