Tragedy in Tin Can Holler By Rozetta Mowery- A True Crime

September 19, 2009 at 7:32 pm (Crime Novels, Suspense Novels, True Crime)

New Tragedy Cover_01.15.09INTRODUCTION

Did you ever wonder about your parents’, grandparents’ and greatgrandparents’

past? Did you ever wonder about the skeletons that are

hanging in your family closet? Rozetta did! Her father murdered her

mother in a place called Tin Can Holler when she was seven years old.

Her mother’s horrible death and disfi gurement by the hands of her father

always haunted her. She spent over twelve years of her childhood

in abusive foster homes being raised by strangers who did not love her

and was separated from her siblings, while her wealthy grandfather,

whom she did not know, lived in a mansion and had a life of luxury.

Her mother’s love and spirit gave her the courage to overcome the

many obstacles she faced during her lifetime. She was determined to

be normal and prove that even though she came from a place called Tin

Can Holler and was a foster child most of her childhood, there is hope

for a better life. She promised herself that she would someday fi nd the

truth about her beloved mother’s death.

At the age of 53, after her youngest child turned 21, Rozetta set out

on a quest to search for information about her family and her mother’s

murder. Her mother’s spirit was calling her to return to the place of

her birth and to Tin Can Holler where it all began in 1959. In February

2006 she sold her beautiful home in Florida, where she had lived for

over 34 years, and resigned from her position with a large corporation.

Discovering why her father murdered her mother was just the tip

of the iceberg. When a person brutally murders someone they proclaim

to love, it makes you question that person’s past and their upbringing.

Rozetta had no knowledge of her father’s background or his family,

but her instincts told her there had to be more to the story. Uncovering

the nightmarish details of her family’s past transgressions, traumatized

Rozetta and shocked the residents of three counties in southeast Tennessee.

Most people would not have done what Rozetta did. The family

secrets would have remained with the ghosts who haunt the ridge

where her grandmother disposed of her victims. Tragedy in Tin Can

Holler is the story of a back woods family who did unspeakable horrors.

The horrifi c cycle of hate and killings in her family span more

than a century before she was born. It’s also a story of understanding

and forgiveness. She knew she could not change or erase her family

history, but she owed it to her mother to fi nd the truth, because of all

the good that she had stood for when she was alive. She hopes her faith

and the love she inherited from her mother is all that she will need to

break the family curse, so it never surfaces again in her children, grandchildren,

nieces or nephews for generations to come.

She knew in her heart that she must set the record straight. By writing

her story she hopes to rectify the sins of her father, break the family

curse and spread her message about the dangers of domestic violence

and the horrible aftermath of what happens to the children. Even though

forty-seven years had passed since her mother’s death, and regardless

of the cost, she knew the truth would fi nally set her free.


Tragedy in Tin Can Holler is Rozetta Mowery’s account of

the hard things that led to the murder of her mother by her

father. The story, which spans generations and describes the

decades of physical, psychological, sexual and substance

abuse that culminated in that brutal murder, unspools in precise,

measured language that recalls Capote’s In Cold Blood.

Mowery in unsparing in the details as she pursues the leads

that will give her the answers she’s sought since her mother

was taken from her at age seven. Remarkably, she ends her

account with a word of forgiveness, which must be a testament

to the influence of a Higher Power. Tragedy in Tin Can should perhaps be read in pieces.

I raced through it in one sitting and couldn’t sleep for three nights. I suspect I’ll always

carry this story with me. When you read something by

Stephen King, you can comfort yourself with the knowledge

that it’s only fiction. Unfortunately, the monsters described



by Mowery don’t exist only between the covers of a book.

They’re real and they’re all the more haunting for it.”

Luke Osteen, Freelance Journalist

1 Comment

  1. Kathy Hennessee said,

    Read this book. This is an awesome book. This story was close to where I grew up been in the home of Grace Sims but at the time didn’t know the story til later so I just had to read the book. Loved it gonna buy me copy

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