Enna 'is with Jesus,' preacher reminds 2-year-old's mourners

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Date: 2008-05-23
Source: djournal.com

Enna 'is with Jesus,' preacher reminds 2-year-old's mourners

5/23/2008 11:47:07 AM
By Patsy R. Brumfield
Daily Journal

PONTOTOC - Enna Isabel Barreto looked like a tiny porcelain doll sleeping in her white and gold coffin Thursday.

Her grieving parents stood by the bier, silently comforting each other as they wept.

A half hour later, they stood stoically beside a Union County sheriff's extended cab truck, extending their hands compliantly to a tall deputy as he handcuffed each of them for their drive to their 2-year-old daughter's burial. Six law enforcement officers stood ready as her pallbearers.

Enna died Monday at LeBonheur Children’s Medical Center in Memphis.

Her parents say she fell out of a grocery cart during a Memphis shopping trip the day before. Union County has charged them with seven counts of child endangerment, and bond is set at $350,000 each.
At Tutor Memorial Funeral Home on Thursday, six floral arrangements flanked Enna’s tiny casket. Seven family members, which didn’t include her siblings, sought to console each other, as 14 friends and acquaintances sat witness to the solemn service.

Annette Hickey, Union County's chancery clerk, played religious music before and after the service in the small chapel just off Highway 15.

"Lord, we don't know what to do," prayed Bro. Lou Zemeck with the bereaved in the private state rooms before they moved to the chapel. "Now is the time for tears."

The service held poignant moments.

As funeral home attendants situated Enna's bier before the podium, the pink and white floral spray atop the coffin began to slip. Her father, Ramon Barreto, quietly moved forward one step to catch it and gently replace it where it belonged.

Her mother, Janet Killough Barreto, placed her left arm and then her dark-haired head onto his right shoulder as they sat on the chapel’s front row, her face streaked by tears.

Typically, those charged with murder are not allowed to attend funerals. The Barretos, however, were charged for lesser crimes.

"We are here to remember Enna," Bro. Zemek told them. "It is a bittersweet day - bitter because she is no longer with us; sweet because she is with Jesus."

Enna's five sisters and three young brothers were not there to hear his words. They are in the custody of the Department of Human Services while law enforcement sorts out what will happen to their parents. Thursday, Sheriff Tommy Wilhite said other charges may come because of the child’s death, but he withheld anything more.

Most of the children are Guatemalan adoptees, officials say. When investigators went to their two-trailer home at 824 County Road 87 in south Union County on Tuesday, they found a squalid residence and hundreds of maltreated animals caged in the backyard.

"We are not here to condemn or to judge anybody today," Zemek observed. "We are here to celebrate the life of a little 2-year-old girl."

Contact Patsy R. Brumfield at (662) 678-1596 or patsy.brumfield@djournal.com.

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