Mother Writes Children’s Book to Honor Daughter

Mother Writes Children’s Book to Honor Daughter

Debbie Sorrells speaks of her daughter, Officer Amy Caprio, as someone who could carry a community on her shoulders; she did, and her name still does. Officer Caprio was responding to a burglary in May of 2018 when teenage suspect Dawnta Harris struck her with his car as he was fleeing the scene. Officer Caprio did not survive the hit-and-run. Harris was convicted of a first-degree murder charge and sentenced to life in prison.

Sorrells wrote “The Story of the Dragonflyto honor her daughter.

But how does the dragonfly tie into all of this? After the passing of Officer Caprio, Sorrells— along with the Baltimore County community— started to notice dragonflies.

“I no longer believe in coincidences. There’s a reason for everything. Through the dragonfly, I think children, as well as adults, can have some physical representation to remind them of Amy and the love, protection, and security she provided and still does,” Sorrells said.

The children’s book began as a speech that Sorrells wrote for Gunpowder Elementary School students. After giving that speech, she was encouraged to turn it into a book. Sorrells and her middle daughter—and artist and illustrator— teamed up to complete Officer Caprio’s story. 

“Laura agreed to illustrate ‘The Story of the Dragonfly,’ a book that so many people were requesting after the dedication. Laura, a modest and humble artist in her own right, agreed. Her pictures combined with my speech made the book,” Sorrells said.

The Barnes and Noble overview of the author shares that she and her husband Garry are two cornerstones, as well as building blocks within the Baltimore County community. Officer Caprio and her family are all a part of something that comforts the world around them and the people they continue to affect. Sorrells believes that the dragonfly symbolizes her daughter watching over the community.

“I wanted the children to find hope and security from the trauma of 5/21. I wanted them to focus on positive memories and thoughts – not the negativity of that day. So many people made this book happen and so many people have kept Amy alive through memories,” Sorrells said.

“The Story of the Dragonfly” was published by Apprentice House Press at Loyola University Maryland and is available for purchase here.

Featured Image courtesy of Luca Marinzulich.