I suppose I should first start off with an obligatory link, since it’s too painful to type out the particulars myself. For the surfing-impaired, the gist is that a coworker of mine, the sports editor at the newspaper i work for, was attacked, beaten to death, and apparently robbed as he stopped on his way home late last night to feed a stray cat in the employee parking lot.
I am not looking for sympathy. There are those who need it much more than I right now. And sympathy from strangers on a message board, however well intentioned, does little to ease the feelings.
I am not looking to rant, really. I have the anger, the sadness, the frustration, but I’m just too numb, dazed, and freaked out to do so right now.
I guess I’m just looking to vent. At the stupidity of the death of one of my closest coworkers; as a photographer who works nights and weekends (high time for sports events), I spent more time working with him than with my own editor. I’m pretty new to the world of journalism, but he was as good a mentor as could be asked for - for chrissakes, he even wrote me a letter of recommendation for grad school a few weeks ago.
And I’d like to vent the rage I feel at cowards who would strike a warm, even-keeled, funny guy in the middle of the night, apparently for nothing more than his fucking wallet, which he probably would have just given them anyway. And at the fact that living a smallish city, where this is only the third murder all year, and where random violent crime like this is essentially unknown, we were lulled into a false sense of complacency. I’d seen seedy people from the hood near the parking lot at night before (the building is, after all, near some of the rougher neighborhoods in town). Hell, someone was even carjacked at the gas station across the street once. But even still, all those crimes (including the carjacking) were invariably just people in the hood acting out on other people in the hood; somehow, the fact that we were caucasian and middle-class and not involved in the drug trade made us think we were invincible to the crime occurring around us at work.
And finally, I’d like to vent about the fact that I frequently left the building late at night myself, laden down with as much as ten thousand dollars in camera gear, making myself the perfect target for robbers. And that perhaps the only reason it’s wasn’t me laying dying in a pool of blood next to my car was because yesterday was my day off.
this morning, i came in, and sitting on top of my inbox was a fresh sports assignment for tonight scrawled out in his handwriting. that was bad enough, but then i realized that the last thing he usually did at night before going home was fill out photo requests, so the piece of paper i was holding probably represented some of the last moments of his life.
kent, you will be missed.
fuck. fuck fuck fuck.