In 1984, I cried when my cousin, Reginald Long, died by gun suicide. He planned it, but it is still very hard. He was only 19-years-old at the time. He was always happy-go-lucky. Our family still doesn’t have closure from his death. Gun violence needs to stop. It can be stopped.
I was estranged from my family of origin at the time we lost Lydia, and had been for some time. I didn’t see the young woman she was becoming, so she remains to me always the girl catching tadpoles in the pond, bringing home crickets. Her eyes shone bright upon joyful things. Her heart was tender, sympathetic.
I wear orange for Lydia Dew.
You missed our wedding, and I married someone else. You missed the birth of our child, so I loved a child with someone else. You missed holding my hand for the last 37 years, so I held someone else. We missed a lifetime of love because you chose to carry a gun.