It was exactly 34 years ago on a Friday on February the 8th,1985 that a man I loved tremendously was shot to death in a homicide.He was shot at point blank for the money in his pocket or wallet.!This man was was my father !
He died while I was holding him in my arms, rubbing his hands and putting my jacket on him to keep him warm. I kept rubbing his hands and praying and praying that by some miracle the almighty would keep my father alive. I kept on talking to him because I could see he was bleeding profusely and that his eyes were starting to roll back into his head.I kept on saying Dad, you are strong, hang in there, just hang in there ! Dad you can make it !
The rain was pouring on that February day and associates at work, where this homicide, armed robbery took place had called 911 for help. I had a few brief moments with the hero of my life, my Dad, before the ambulance came. I will never forget his last words. Not knowing the gravity of the situation and yet knowing he was losing consciousness he told me to not tell my mother and then he said, ” but take care of her”. He then said “take care of your younger brother and your sister and the family”.
These were the last words of my beloved father before the ambulance took him to the hospital.
I tried to go into the ambulance with my father but they wouldn’t allow me. I pleaded with them, but in the end they left and took off without letting me and I was not to be by his side in what were his last moments.
I jumped into my car and with a couple of my associates drove to the hospital behind the ambulance.
I was praying all the time, dreaming and wishing the impossible but never giving up hope.
When I reached the hospital the rain was pouring down as though the heavens had opened up and were crying with me. It was pouring rain.
By then, close relatives and friends who had been informed of the incident had also come to the hospital .
It took a short time after which a Dr. came with a plastic bag in his hands.
He asked for me and I told him that I was the son of the man whose life he had just tried to save.
He looked at me and apologized and said “we tried everything but the gunshot wound was too deep and the bleeding could not be stopped”.
He handed me this little bag which had my fathers wallet, some change and his ID.
I could not believe what had happened and thought that I was having a nightmare. This cannot be, I kept telling myself !
so senseless, so careless, so unnecessarily violent.
How can someone take a life so easily, for pocket change, or a few hundred dollars in another human beings pocket when you cannot give that life back.
Only God should be able to take away a persons life.
How dare you kill, take life away ? you cannot create life !!
For what ? for money, for a small amount of money ?
I was enraged, broken and hurt and didn’t even know how to face my mother and my siblings, family, friends and acquaintances.
I was truly in disbelief and thought that the world would stop, time will reverse itself and my dad would be there.I truly believed so.
I truly believed that, not knowing the finality of death !
Yes, as my custom dictated, we would go to the cemetery when someone we knew would die.We would go the the memorial services and spend time with the close family and try to console them and be close to them in their time of agony and pain. But the finality of death had never struck me until it was the death of my own father.
I was in shock, and denial and extremely angry. Angry at the world, my luck, my fate and my faith and the whole world. Why me, why my loved ones ?????
I had a feeling of embarrassment, a feeling of shame, thinking that God was punishing my family and I.
I read almost every book about, life and death and the after life.
After 34 years and without ever having sought counseling or help I am writing this so that others will know that despite all the tragedies and unexplainable things that happen in our lives, life goes on, time heals and that you cannot lose faith!
You must keep on, ” do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.
The universe has it, that no matter how good, how bad, how rich, how poor, how powerful, how weak, how wicked , how kind we will all die. Nothing is forever. Not even the sun or the universe itself.
I am not writing this to share my misery or the pain I felt, nor to gain pity, but rather to share my experiences and knowledge with those that have gone through the tragedies of life, sometimes totally senseless, unexplainable and cruel. I have long since forgiven the two people who shot and killed my father. I left them in the hands of the Creator .
I write this to let you know that you are not alone and that good people go through such things as unexplainable and painful as they may be.
You must never give up while you have life.
Enjoy your loved ones while they are around thinking that it might be the last day you can see them, touch them, breathe the air around them, and hear their voice.It might be the last day you can hear them laugh with you and love you and be with you.
We are one humanity, created by the same creator and share life and the world till death do us part.
Find reasons to make friendships and unity rather than enmity and division. Search for reasons to love others rather than to hate them.
Life is too short my friends.
What comes after, no one knows !