SEBRING — Ana Pinon-Williams was a 38-year-old mother to seven children, a wife, a daughter, and a sister. She was cut down in the prime of her life. Williams was one of five women that were senselessly murder Wednesday at the South Sebring SunTrust.
Williams was originally from Mexico and moved to Okeechobee where she met her husband. She was married for six years and had three biological children ages 19, 17 and 11. She also had four step-children ages 29, 24, 21 and 13.
Her brother-in-law, Tim Williams, spoke to the press Thursday afternoon. The family wanted to do things on their terms and waited to announce that she was a victim.
“Her life was truly a light in this world, she made it a better place,” said Tim Williams. “Ana was new to the SunTrust family but she loved her work and her co-workers. SunTrust representatives and executives have been with us every step of the way. We appreciate their ongoing care and support.”
Ana Williams’ children are in shock from all of this and the family is shielding them the best they can, he said. The family said it will take time to process and requested privacy as they begin the healing process.
“We do not know what was going on in the mind of the individual who committed this atrocious act but we do know he was influenced by the darkness of this world,” Williams said. “We will not try to understand the darkness but with God’s help we will overcome it. There is no law that can change the human heart but there is a God who can.”
Another brother-in-law works as a detective for the Sebring Police Department. He was sent to the scene but was pulled off the case when Ana Williams was determined to be a suspected victim.
“Ana found her life when she surrendered it to Jesus Christ,” said Tim Williams. “We know that she did not die in that bank, we know that she is alive today with her savior. We are determined to let Ana’s memory be marked by the life she lived, the people she loved and the difference she made.
“She accepted others where they were in life,” he said. “Loving came easy for her. Loving her was easy.
Living without her will be hard. Our family will not only survive but we will thrive as a living testament to the power of prayer and faith. We will never forget Ana. She will forever live in our hearts and minds.”
Ana Williams began working at SunTrust Jan. 4 before this heinous incident occurred. This is the first loss in the family from gun violence.
“There are those who say that prayer is a useless act when tragedies such as this strikes. These same people argue that we need to pass new laws and assert more control over people,” Tim Williams said. “Our family rejects this ideology because we have experienced personally changed hearts as a result of prayer and faith. Darkness can only be defeated by light and we believe that Jesus Christ is that light. Lastly our thanks to Sen. [Marco] Rubio’s staff, Attorney General [Ashley] Moody and her staff.”
Loving tributes to Ana Williams are popping up all over social media. One is from Debra Ganas.
“She’d prayed for this job,” said Ganas on Facebook. “She was excited she’d no longer have to commute to work and was looking forward to being able to sign her children up for extra curricular activities and get to be there to watch them. She and her husband just bought their new home and were well underway with remodeling. She’d snap her morning coffee pics overlooking the lake they live on.
“We’d just been planning to go to the local festivals and talked about a trip to Mexico,” she said. “So many plans.
“So much life to be lived but today for reasons we are yet aware of, a shooter entered the bank she worked at. The job she’d prayed for, and he took her precious life, along with others,” Ganas said. “Her daughters, son and husband did not have their Mother or Wife come home. We cannot even begin to grasp or put into words the sheer shock and devastation the family and friends are experiencing from this senseless tragedy that has taken place.
“I believe in my heart that as she was there (heaven), before the shooter even pulled the trigger that God showed mercy on her and removed all fear and took her before the pain could be felt,” she said.
“Take care of each other, love each other, be the best friend anyone can know,” the family added.