Saturday, April 19, 2008

Remembering Nathan

I've been hemming and hawing over whether I'd write a post about this.

Part of me feels as though I have no right to examine the situation, feel badly about it or even write about it. Because it didn't happen to me. It happened to people I know and love. That's not to say I don't feel sad, or angry, or injusticed. It just means that I don't feel worthy of writing about the situation because I'm so far removed.

That and because the one person who was hurt most by what happened - the murder of his son - reads my blog on a regular basis. I originally felt that if I wrote about his son, Nathan, that I might do an injustice to his memory, or not cover the facts wholely, or miss a key element. I felt those things because I did not know him as well as I should have.

But to not write about what happened at all is sort of an injustice in and of itself. Nathan was an amazing person and no verdict returned by any jury will ever erase that fact. He touched my life, in whatever small way, so to offer even a small examination of my thoughts on his death and the trial of his killer will only be adding to the great expanse of what is...the whole of the memories of his short life.

Actually, I could fill many blog entries with links to news articles about his death. I could talk at great length about the memories I have of him as a rough and tumble little boy - dirty and sweaty and full of bruises, on his bike alongside my baby brother. I could tell you of the number of times that I, as the big sister, stuffed those bikes into the trunk of my old beater car and drove those boys wherever it was they needed to go. I could tell you that regardless of the fact that I hadn't seen him in years, that he approached me and my young son at the mall one day a few years ago. He was with friends that I didn't recognize, and there I was, a pregnant old lady, in a booth at the food court, wrestling with my 2-year-old, trying to get him to eat. He sauntered up and said, "Hey Smelleen! How are you?" as if I'd seen him just the week before.

But he left this world much too young for me to not mention the way in which he died. He was 20. There was an argument on a hot summer night. He was stabbed, once in the chest. He died there, on the sidewalk.

There was a trial, of course, of the man who'd stabbed him. The jury returned their verdict yesterday. To say it was disappointing is an understatement. There are no words to describe how I felt when I heard that this...guy...would get a max of five years in jail for the loss of such a powerful presence like Nathan. I decided I'd give it a day, before writing about it, but I don't know that I'll ever be able to describe that feeling. I can't imagine what his parents must feel.

So, because I have nothing else to offer on the subject, I'm including below a video, made by one of Nathan's many friends, that includes memories of his life. There are three parts total, equaling roughly 30 minutes. If you watch the one below links to the others should appear at the end.

I truly believe Nathan is in a better place, riding his bike off the jumps in the sky.

God bless you, Nathan. You've left a whole in many hearts.

In an incredible thought of the day, the same baby brother? Today is his 21st birthday. I can only think that Nathan would have probably bought him a beer.


morninglight mama said...

I am so sorry to read this. I can't imagine that peace will come soon, in regards to this loss. My thoughts are with you all.

Tom said...

Words cannot express the insult that has been added to injury by the jury's apathy to this crime. One can only hope that justice will come from another source to set the balance of good and evil once again. Thanks Colleen, for being there for me throughout this ordeal.