Connecticut children’s flower named in honor of Cheshire home invasion victim

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Many new laws went in effect in Connecticut at the start of July. One of them has named Four O’Clocks the official children’s state flower in honor of Michaela Petit, killed in the Cheshire home invasion in 2007.

Michaela’s sister, Hailey, and their mother, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, were killed as well. Dr. William Petit was the only survivor. 

“It was a nice tribute to my daughter, Michaela, to have the first children’s state flower named,” he said. “It was a nice tribute to the volunteers because it’s been a program of the Petit Family Foundation.”

“Michaela, right before she died she had just finished fifth grade and she learned about Gandhi,” said Dr. Petit. “She had seen the quote ‘you must be the change you wish to see in the world,’ so we’ve used that.”

“The Michaela’s Garden project was about growing the flowers, harvesting the seeds, passing them on to other people,” he said. “People like to say ‘plant the seeds of hope, seeds of change.'”