(SIOUX FALLS, S.D.) -- Friends, family members and strangers have helped Tina Curl’s grim dream come to fruition -- to watch the man who raped and murdered her 9-year-old daughter be strapped to a gurney and fight for his final breath as lethal drugs course through his veins.
Curl, 50, spent months raising money for the trip from New York to South Dakota where she’ll get a “front row seat” to watch Donald Moeller be executed. The execution could happen any time between Monday and Nov. 3.
“I have waited 22 long years for this,” Curl, who has arrived in Sioux Falls, S.D., told ABC News during her fundraising drive. "He watched her die and I am going to watch him die.”
Curl's daughter, Becky O’Connell, went to the convenience store to buy candy on May 8, 1990. The following morning, her body was found in a wooded area in Lincoln County, S.D.
An autopsy found O’Connell had been raped vaginally and anally and died of a cut to the jugular vein of her neck, according to court documents.
Curl and her husband, Dave, who was O’Connell’s stepfather, had lived in South Dakota for five months at the time of the murder. The couple later relocated to Lake Luzerne, N.Y.
“After this she wasn’t going to stay in that state,” said Rhonda Springer, a longtime friend of Curl who helped spearhead the fundraiser to send Tina and Dave Curl to South Dakota to witness the execution.
Although a one week window has been set for Moeller’s execution, the actual date of lethal injection is at the warden’s discretion, with 48 hours’ notice required, Tina Curl said.
“It means everything,” she said. “I ain’t only doing it for me. I am doing it for Becky.”
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