I was driving down the road one day a few years ago, and an announcement came over the radio that someone had shot himself, his wife and their dogs. I thought I’d misheard the name until they said it again; it was a friend of mine. I was just astounded, to say the least. It just broke my heart.
I knew him through his first wife, one of my best friends. And I really liked him a lot: He was funny and delightful and creative and a good man. He held two fundraisers for a nonprofit that I ran. But he was also losing his profession, he had a history of depression and he was a recovering addict. I didn’t see much of that side of him, though—he hid it.
I called my friend immediately, and she was devastated because they’d remained friends. It wasn’t until fairly recently that I thought of myself as a gun violence survivor, though. But I am. I think about him and miss him terribly.