At my last job, there were two suicides within the span of a year. It is one of the reasons I no longer work there. I don’t handle those things very well. I just don’t. I internalize things too much. I take those things seriously. As a peer to these people, I wondered if there was something I could’ve done even thought it was obvious there wasn’t.
Both men blew their brains out. Both were in the military and had seen unspeakable things in their youth. I think about them a lot. I thought about them yesterday when news of Javon Belcher broke.
The first suicide was announced in hushed tones. “Bob died last night” was all I heard. Funeral arrangements were announced. He was to be buried at the military cemetary in Kansas. I went. I grieved that night. I didn’t know at that time that he had taken his own life. I grieved for Bob.
When I went to the funeral I dressed in a suit. Nobody else did. I found that odd. I was expecting full military honors and instead there was an elderly bugler with a sound box in the bell of the horn playing taps. Incredible. How tacky, I thought.
It wasn’t until I was walking back to my car when I overheard someone say “blew his head off.”
Then I felt… cheated? decieved? duped?
Mad. I felt mad. Then pity. Then just uncontrollable sadness.
All of these feelings flooded over me yesterday morning as I watched the events unfold on twitter. Obviously, this incident was different and there was a horrific murder at his hand. But the emotions I felt were just as scattered. And internalized.
So, I take digital pen to this paper. To let some of those emotions out.
I am a little disgusted, frankly, that the Chiefs are choosing to play today. One day before they witnessed unspeakable horror with their own eyes. But nobody told me how to react when I found out about Bob. I supposed I do not have the right to tell Romeo Crennel or Scott Pioli.
I do know that I will be thinking about the little motherless and fatherless child today when I watch the Chiefs flounder on the field today against the Panthers.
And I will be thinking about Bob.