Australian woman Justine Damon was fatally shot by a US police officer on Saturday. Following on from her tragic death, details have emerged about the past hardships Justine faced and her courageous journey to find happiness.
As news.com.au reports, a video posted to Youtube eight days before Justine's death captures an hour-long speech she gave at Minneapolis’s Lake Harriet Spiritual Community centre.
The 40-year-old discussed her mother’s battle with alcoholism, depression and cancer.
“I saw that my mum was really at the mercy of her mind and her emotions and she couldn’t get out. She was really being ruled by her addictions,” she said.
“I was witnessing a potential future for myself … and that terrified me.”
Justine said she struggled with her own addictions after her mother’s death from cancer.
“It was one of the darkest points in my life and over the six months before I’d really spent several periods considering whether I wanted to stay on the planet or not,” she said.
“So I was really, really unhappy and really quite sick.”
But Justine had an epiphany and turned to mediation and other spiritual beliefs to find peace in her life.
AAP reports that Justine had training as a veterinarian and became a meditation teacher, life coach and yoga instructor.
Originally from Sydney, she was engaged to marry her 50-year-old partner Don Damond.
Her heartbroken partner has spoken out about her shock death, saying that both he and his son are "devastated" by their loss.
“Our hearts are broken and we utterly devastated by the loss of Justine,” the 50 year old said in a statement outside his Minneapolis home.
"She touched so many people with her loving and generous heart. She was a teaching to so many and living a life of openness, love and kindness," Don continued, as reported byNews.com.au.
“She was so kind and so darn funny. It is difficult to fathom how to go forward without her in my life."
State officials revealed that the officers’ body cameras were not switched on at the time of the shooting.
This article first published on Marie Claire.