Earlier today, we reported that New York real estate magnate David Winoker died in a tragic skydiving accident. As more details of that tragic story emerges, we're learning that Mr. Winoker's surviving wife, Jilian, blames herself for her husband's untimely demise.
But should Jilian Winoker shoulder this blame?
Misplaced guilt and blame are common emotions when someone is faced with an unexpected death in the family. In many ways, Mrs. Winoker is just like any other grieving widow. One heart-wrenching detail, however, makes her situation all the more difficult to overcome: she talked her husband into jumping.
According to the Daily Mail, Jillian Winoker made this difficult admission before the attendants at her 49-year-old husband’s funeral. Fighting back tears, the guilt-wracked widow told friends and family, “He never said no to me. Maybe this time, he should have said no.”
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The funeral service was held on Father’s Day in Chappaqua, New York.
According to a report in the New York Post, Mr. Winoker’s ill-fated skydiving expedition was delayed to accommodate a growing list of participants of which Mr. Winoker was one. He originally had no desire to skydive, but his wife says she talked him into it.
It's easy to empathize with Jillian Winoker, but is there something substantive to her guilt? Is she right to feel responsible for her husband's death, or does she need to accept that tragedies happen every day without cause?