Before You Were Born

Well the last time I had written I was working at Blockbuster, Jake as always in his carpentry. Grandpa Newberg had passed away, now it seems so far away. So much has changed a lot for the good and some for the very worst.

I now work for a construction company as a laborer, which I absolutely love. Firearm season for deer just ended, and both Jake and I are laid off for the winter. Seeing as you will undoubtedly be old enough when I show you this I suppose I have to tell you about what happened the week I started work, although it is so very hard to think about. My most beloved aunt was taken away from me in an act of senseless violence. My mom’s only sister, her older sister, the best mother, aunt and friend you could ever wish to have.

August 13, 2011 – a beautiful Saturday. I had quit my other jobs in preparation to start on Highway 4 with the construction crew. Jake and I had lounged around all day inside and out in the yard. The whole day I had this terrible feeling in my chest, I had even asked my buddy Holly, who is a nurse, what she thought it might be. Like Jake, she agreed that it was probably stress and anxiousness about my new job. I wasn’t so sure it was such a horrible feeling.

It was evening when I got the phone call. Jake, Biggie and I were in the living room doing our normal Saturday routine of watching movies and such. This weird local phone number called my phone. Usually I wouldn’t have answered but something made me pick it up. It was my stepdad Craig. He was out of breath like he’d been running and sounded funny. I assumed he was at a party and was having drinks and wanted to mess with me. Then he told me to sit down. I knew something was very wrong and it became apparent that the noise I mistook for a party was actually police sirens coming and people shouting. He told me that Uncle Brian had shot and killed my auntie Kim and then killed himself. I instantly shot out of my seat and started scrambling to put my boots on not knowing what I was doing or where I was going. Jake and Biggie were freaking out trying to figure out what had happened. I got disconnected with Craig and couldn’t handle the news at all. I fell to the ground outside shaking like a leaf; all I could do was scream and cry. I tried to get ahold of my dad my anchor in life, but he was in the Boundary Waters for four more days. My stepmom Sandy had answered the phone. She did her best to calm me down as she ran to her vehicle to pick me up. She brought me to the police department.

There my mom and Craig and their friends Annie and Mark were inside talking to the police. Annie was standing next to my aunt when Uncle Brian opened fire; he shot right over Annie’s head as her husband stood stunned in the living room. My mom had sent her cell phone inside with Annie and heard screaming she called 911. My stepdad Craig made it to my auntie’s house before the cops did and ran in to try and save her, but it was too late. This night changed my families’ life forever. My mom had to call my auntie’s three children and tell them what had happened then call her own parents to let them know their daughter had been murdered. My grandparents had been living in Arkansas at the time and started driving home immediately; they were home the next evening. That whole two weeks were such a whirlwind.

My cousins arrived the next morning, as well as many other family members and friends. The church arrived at mealtimes bringing veggie trays and hot dishes. My mom was practically catatonic. She wouldn’t speak except to say that she wanted her sister back. No one slept that night after we all left the police station. My mom’s best friend drove me to my auntie’s house where we collected her animals, dropping the cats off at the humane society and me taking the dog home to my house. That whole night we were trying to get a hold of my stepsister Kira but she was on a midnight shift and her phone was dead.

I called my stepbrother Clay so we could go tell her together. We had to pound on her door to wake her and her boyfriend up. They eventually got up and Kira knew instantly something was very wrong. After we told her the tragic news we all sat and cried together, then gathered our strength to go to our parents’ house and be strong for them. I started work that Monday because my Auntie would have wanted me too. She was so happy I had gotten this job, and there was no way I could disappoint her by not going. She still lives on with us, and helps us all in her own little ways. Mom has gotten better eventually going back to work and her normal daily routines. Craig still has problems blaming himself, and Grandma and Grandpa are still hurting very bad. My cousins, Rae, Chris, and Danny are all having their own struggles but how does anything preparing you to deal with the death of both your parents in such a violent way? But Auntie Kim would not have wanted us to be sad though, and that’s what I think of when I start to slip into the sadness, or when I get mad. She would always have something good to say about almost everyone, and always had such a great outlook on everything.

Well I will write more on a later date, because this took so much out of me. I miss her so damn much it hurts.

Love always, Me

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