Our community suffered a loss this week.
I should start by saying that I don't know this family. I had heard his name in passing - Coach Conway. Chris did some of his grad school work with Coach Conway's wife, Melissa. They went through the Red Clay Writing Project together...she was pregnant about the same time that I was with Quinn. He taught and coached many of my former students. But, I never had the pleasure of meeting him.
And yet I can't stop thinking about him.
You see, Coach Conway was killed in an automobile accident on the road that we live on...just up the street from our neighborhood...Monday morning on his way to work.
I travel that same road and believe me, it is dark. And the deer are abundant.
I can't stop thinking about his wife. She travels the same road and came upon the wreck shortly after it happened.
And I can't stop thinking about their little boy who is about the same age as Quinn. A little boy who will only know his dad through stories and pictures.
I also can't stop thinking about his students, his players, his colleagues.
Tragedies like this one tend to hit schools hard. Especially in small, close knit communities like ours.
Chris and I have since had multiple conversations about death this week. About what we would want the other to do if we were to die. Conversations that are considered morbid. Conversations that seemed ridiculous to us, up until this week.
But this week, I can't stop thinking about death. About how death has impacted this family. A family so similar to my own.
And since I don't know them, I do the only thing I know to do.
I pray for them. I pray for peace. I pray for comfort. I pray for help in getting them through this holiday season.
I just pray.