The tragic case of the death of Gabby Petito has been a major news story since her disappearance, and many women have shared similar experiences that they've had, opening up a terrifying yet important dialogue. Good Morning America host Ginger Zee took to Instagram to share her own scary abuse situation.
"I was lucky… I got out," Zee wrote, alongside a photo of herself from years ago and some pages from her memoir Natural Disaster, detailing the abuse that she suffered from a former partner. "I had the privilege of feeling comfortable calling police. I had the support that could lend me money to fly away."
"As T.J. Holmes showed us - missing persons cases happen to so many that don't get media attention, the people of color. Daniel Robinson, Maya Millete, Jelani Day," Zee continued. "Nearly half of the almost 90k missing persons are people of color."
"We must make sure that justice is served in Gabby Petito's case & shines a light on the disparity of missing persons but also the pervasiveness of domestic physical & psychological violence and the disparities there," Zee wrote. "As I watched the body cam where she is in the isolation of a vehicle in the desert, it felt eerily like my story. That moment I was hiding under a table in a desert hotel, crying to my mom when she told me she feared for my life. She told me to call the police. I did. They got me to a different hotel and away from him. I flew out the next day."
"I know we don't know the details yet but we know Gabby was murdered. He is the only suspect," Zee wrote, referencing Petito's fiancé, Brian Laundrie, who refused to help the police and has since gone missing. "We also know that not everyone in an abusive situation has the support or education to ask for help. They likely don't believe they deserve it. Psychological abuse is often a precursor to physical and sexual abuse."
Zee went on to detail the signs of psychological abuse, including threatening harm, isolation, constant criticism, and other troubling behaviors. She also pointed those suffering from abuse in the direction of aid. "If so, your partner may be abusing you. For help, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800- 799-SAFE (7233), or visit Domesticshelters.org to access professional help," she concluded.
Autopsy results revealed on Tuesday that the body Wyoming authorities discovered in Bridger-Teton National Forest was in fact Gabby Petito. Her death has been ruled a homicide. Police are currently searching for her fiance and driving partner Brian Laundrie, who went missing during the search for Petito. "Anyone with information concerning Mr. Laundrie's role in this matter or his current whereabouts should contact the FBI."
Petito's family responded to the news in a statement saying that they are taking time to grieve in private. "We will be making a statement when Gabby is home," the family said via their attorney. Petito was reported missing on Sept. 11 by her family to New York's Suffolk County police department. She was said to have been on a cross-country road trip with Laundrie when the two somehow split in Wyoming. Laundrie returned home to his family in Florida in Petito's 2012 Ford Transit van alone.