A $10,000 scholarship was given to Brandon Biggs this week, whose father was murdered on October 26, 2001. (This murder case is known as the Windshield Murder) The money was awarded to Brandon by "Compassion," a bimonthly publication created and written by death row inmates to raise money for family members of murdered victims.
According to the editor Dennis Skillicorn, also a Missouri death row inmate, what touched the heart of publication's staff and reader was Brandon's desire to show compassion and forgiveness to the Chante Mallard, who killed his father.
During an interview with Skillicorn he highly complemented Brandon:
"His overwhelming desire to forgive this woman, it's not something that you generally hear from the public," he said. "The message that he was trying to give was far more valuable than any amount of money we could ever give him."
Brandon, now a sophomore at Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU), Waxahachie, Texas, expressed his deep appreciation for the scholarship. He will be using the money to pay off his tuition.
After showing his willingness to forgive Chante Mallard to the public, Compassion encouraged him to apply for the scholarship.
In his essay, Brandon said that because of the forgiveness he has been receiving from Jesus Christ through out his own life, he was able to offer the same forgiveness to her.
According to Brandon, this traumatic incident has impacted his life in many ways:
"Prior to the release of the details of my father's death, I was just a young man in high school in a small town. While I would like to move on from this, it is a big part of my life," said Brandon in an interview following Wednesday's press conference. "I'm grateful that so many doors have opened for me to share the message of mercy, grace and forgiveness around the world." Following the trial, Brandon made appearances on various programs including NBC's "Today Show" and the "Larry King Live Show."
Chante Mallard was sentenced to 50 years in prison for hitting his dad, Gregory Biggs, with her car and leaving him to die entangled in her windshield.
Brandon's future plan is to be a minister after getting his degree in Pastoral Ministries. He is engaged to sophomore Cassie Mayes, an Elementary Education major at SAGU. They will be married next July and do ministry work in their hometown of Albany, Texas following graduation.