By Audra D. S. Burch
October 15, 2017
LEBANON, Conn. - Rob Sullivan still remembers the gun and the sound of his
mother's high-pitched pleas. Two thieves had burst into his parents'
Hartford home. Demanding his father's dope stash, one of the men placed a
gun to Rob's right temple. "Just give it to them," his mother begged his
He was 6 years old.
The incident, charred in his memory, was an early trauma among many he
recalls from his childhood. He watched his father beat his mother for not
having dinner ready on time or for not cleaning the house, he said. Often,
she fought back. Sometimes when he got home, his parents were too drunk or
high to let him in. Truancy charges landed him in juvenile detention in his