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5.21.2002

In Memorium

Because almost all of my daily readers are from Dalton, I decided to post my Satori Essay from my Advance Composition class. I hope you all enjoy a minute and take a minute to remember Chris for who he was and what he what he was to you.



A New Life Raised from a Death



I was mowing the lawn. I was on our Yard-Man behind the house on our half-acre lot when my mom came out and told me I had a phone call. It was our neighbor.

ďRoss, this is Debbie. Chris Dobbins and Danny Conrad got in a car accident today. Chris didnít make it.Ē

I couldnít believe what I had just heard. As she told me the rest of the details my mind started spinning. This was my first experience of someone close to me dying. It was the summer of 1997, two weeks after my freshman year of high school. It wasnít a grandparent who died; it wasnít a great-aunt or great-uncle. It was a friend.

Someone my age, in my class, that Iíd played baseball and basketball with was dead. I hung up the phone and called some other friends and then sat on our living room couch. I just stared out the window as my mind flew and circled and dove to the far reaches of all human thought.

Someone my age, my friend, was dead.

I thought of all kinds of things: how I was going to be driving soon and what if I was behind the wheel when one of my friends died, what would happen to Dan, how were Chrisí closest friends handling this, what was my last interaction with Chris? All these things loaded my brain over and over. But one thought stuck the entire time.

One of my friends was dead. His life was over, done with. I thought of how this could happen to anyone. How any day it could be all over, and I started to analyze my life and what would happen if I died at that moment. How would I be remembered? Would I die with any regrets? Would anyone even care? So I decided to take Chrisí death as an inspiration, as a reminder. Live today and every day as if it was the last. Donít live with regrets. Donít live with grudges. I began to not let the little things bother me. I slowly but eventually came out of my introverted shell and introduced myself to the world. I started to live by the theme of my favorite musical, Rent: ďNo day but today.Ē I tried and make every day live up to its potential as the best day of my life.

The place where the accident happened is one of the main intersections where Iím from. I drive through it a lot. Hardly a time goes by when I donít think about Chris when I drive through it. I can still remember exactly the way I felt from the time I got the phone call through the rest of the evening. I remember a lot of the things I did with my friends in the week that followed, even some of the conversations. I remember flawlessly the details of the calling hours and what happened there. I remember what I saw and how I felt when I slowly looked at my friend for the last time.

Chris was a friend to everyone and just about every clic in our class was brought together by his passing. But from that phone call, to our graduation when we each put a flower on what would have been his chair, through my dying day, I will continue to remember to make my life the best it can be. I will know any day could be my last, and I know the power a personís death can possess, all because of the phone call I received while mowing the lawn that tragic day in June.