Thursday, April 17, 2008

I Never Wanted To Teach This Lesson

Last night here in my corner of the Phoenix Valley, a car load of teenagers was involved in a serious accident. A fatal one, actually. I don't know what exactly happened, and I'm not sure anyone knows everything yet, but there are two things about this that stand out to me. One, a teenager was driving. And two......

The lone fatality was one of Jock's friends.

We first met this boy the summer of 2006, when the boys played on the same football team together. The coaching staff included both Coach and this boy's father, "Joe" (not really his name, but by now you all know I don't give those out here. However, I did provide the link to the story up above.). Joe was a divorced dad, who obviously adored his son. He took the time to volunteer coach for a city team in a city he didn't even live in, just so he could be as involved in his son's life as possible. And his son quite obviously adored his father. There was respect there, as well as affection; which is hard to see in a pre-teen/teenage boy. This boy, we'll call him "D", was also respectful to the other coaches, myself as Team Mom, and his teammates. I'll also point out that his teammates respected him as well, and they all genuinely liked him.

D was also an incredibly gifted athlete, and I enjoyed watching him play as much as I enjoyed watching my own son. He paid attention, and he knew the game. It was my understanding that D was also a good student, and had a full life ahead of him. And now its all over.

Jock is shocked. This is the first time he's lost a friend to tragedy. I'm praying it will be the last time, while worrying that it won't. I remember my high school years, and losing two people I cared about: one, a close friend of my younger brother's who was hit and killed by a drunk driver; and one of my very best friends who had just turned 18 and was working the graveyard shift at the local convenience store when it was robbed one night. He was shot and killed.

The oldest boy in this car was 16. The driver of the car was D's brother. They were going too fast, and only one was wearing a seat belt. If Jock takes any knowledge away from this heartache, I want him to always remember to wear his seat belt, and to not drive like Speedracer.

Losing a friend in these ways is definitely a life lesson you remember. To this day, I am vehemently against driving while under the influence of any substance at all. I am also a very big supporter of working in pairs, or more!, if you have to work at a convenience store overnight. But as much as these events shaped my life and my opinions, I never wanted my children to experience anything like it. Ever.

My heart is breaking for this family. For the community. For the other boys this group played football with. And my heart is breaking for my son, and the lesson he is hopefully going to learn here. Its one I had prayed he never had to.


Huckdoll said...

I'm so sorry hun. This is truly a tragedy, one that I have experienced myself (I'm sure you read that post). I know how your son feels right now and my deepest sympathies are with you guys.

Trust me, ALL of the friends of the deceased will take away a very important lesson from this tragedy, they really will.

Major hugs to you and Jock.

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

My heart breaks for all involved. While CJ was away at Basic Training, one of his high school friends died from alcohol poisoning. It really saddened him to hear the news but I too, hope he learned a lesson. Life is so precious and we must truly remember to cherish every minute we have with our loved ones.

I hope Jock finds peace in his memories of his friend.

I am truly sorry this happened.


Stella said...

Oh I am so very sorry. This is such a horrible lesson to have to learn. Jock has such a wonderful, loving support system that he will be ok. It might take time but he will.

I lost a friend during high school. No seat belt. In the way back of an SUV. Going way too fast. Horrible horrible horrible. But the lessons learned and the life changing are invaluable!

Anonymous said...

Ug...I'm so sorry Girl. I can't even imagine what the family is going through, what your son and his friends are going through, and what you are going through watching your son hurting so much. You'll all be in my prayers today. xoxo

Rockin Austin said...

Oh my heart is breaking for you, your family and the boys family. You'll all be in my prayers.

Karen said...

I'm so sorry. There are no words for this kind of stuff. My husband's brother was killed in a car accident just days before our second was born. It's so hard to explain to the kids.

Burgh Baby's Mom said...

I'm so sorry to hear that Jock has had to learn this lesson. In a better world, we would never lose kids in ways that are so easily prevented.

*~*Cece*~* said...

I am so sorry your family and community is going through this. It breaks my heart when I hear stories like this.

Amy said...

My thoughts, prayers and love are pouring out for you. I'm so sorry for this tragedy. God be with you.

Meg said...

My heart breaks for your community. My son is just starting to drive and I talk to him all the time about safety. Unfortunately, talk is cheap. I truly hope he doesn't have to learn the lesson the hard way like your son.

We like in a small community and most of us have agreed to tell one another if our kids are drinking or speeding etc. It's just a small way we can keep on top of what's going on.

I hope your son finds some comfort in the good memories of his friend.

Beth from the Funny Farm said...

I am so sorry. I can relate. Unfortunately. It is still to painful to "talk" about.

My son is going to be 15 soon.

And, tonight a mile from us was a serious accident. I hope I don't read in the paper it is someone close. This is a small community. Everyone knows everyone.

Flea said...

I'm so sorry. That this brings back the awful memories from your youth. That your community lost such a talented, loved boy. That Jock is feeling the shock waves of this tsunami so close to home. I can't think of a better mom to help him through this.

retardedrugrat said...

I found my way here via a comment you left on Huckdoll's blog.

What a terrible terrible tragedy. My heart goes out to the family and friends of the kid who died, and those still fighting for their lives are in my thoughts.

I'm sorry that your son had to learn such a hard lesson. I'm sure he will keep it in mind in regards to road safety and wearing his seatbelt.

Maureen said...

How horrible... I am so sorry to read this. Poor family and friends. A tragedy that will never be forgotten.

My condolences to your son.

April said...

I remember this happening a few times in my childhood. The first was when I was probably 9, and someone sideswiped someone's car, and they ended up dead. Another time was when I was in junior high. Not to mention, my sister was killed by a car.
I'm sorry for your son.

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Cecily R said...

Oh what a terrible tragedy and terrible life lesson. There are days when the call I got about Mindy is a distant memory and others when it still feels raw. Losing a friend leaves a hole that is never really filled.

Now as a mother I think about how much more hurt her parents must have felt. It's something I never, ever want to experience. I find myself praying that God never thinks I'm strong enough to handle that sort of thing...

My thoughts and prayers are will everyone. His family, you, Jock and his other friends.

Shellie said...

What a heartbreak, all of us who have lost someone we love like that feel our hearts break again for the families and friends whenever you hear what happened. It sounds like his (too) short life was full anyway.