...about the airshow I just saw but I'll do that later.
Instead I want to talk about a 21 year old girl who died last night. I first met her at her 4th birthday party. She was the daughter of my wife's best friend's sister. Melissa was Madeline's only daughter and she grew up strong in the Catholic church. She had a good head on her shoulders and had announced 2 weeks ago that she wanted to be an organ donor.
She didn't know it would happen so quick.
The full details can be had at www.kcal9.com. You'll need to go to the right hand side or scroll down a bit and find the video link that says, "Witness helps identify hit and run".
Just like that, a life is gone. Just like that, someone decides to leave the scene of an accident. Just like that, two lives are destroyed. One by death, the other by not doing the right thing.
One beautiful girl is gone but her cornea's are helping someone see; her heart valves are giving someone a second chance on life and her skin is easing the pain of a burn victim.
One 24-year-old boy (and I use that word on purpose because at 40 I can see that at 24 I knew shite and was a boy) will probably spend some time in jail on vehicular manslaughter charges. At least, he damn well better. I'd prefer to see a vehicular homicide charge dropped on his head. Thank God for conscientious citizens like the person who followed him from Lakewood to Downey, to his street and watched as he opened his garage, parked his truck and shut the door.
His life will never be the same again. But he has something Melissa doesn't...he gets to live to see another sunrise. He gets to contemplate his life. He might have the opportunity to marry, have kids, grow old.
Her mother will never see her only child graduate college. Meet a man. Get married. Have children.
Sometimes life sucks.
Some people will ask, "Where was God in all of this?"
I think He was standing right beside Melissa when the lights went out. I like to think that when the jolt stopped, she opened her eyes and saw Jesus there waiting to take her to someplace nicer than the urban jungle of Southern California. Why He allowed her to die is not something I can answer nor will I even try. He knows the reason. If it is for us to know, we will know. If not, then it's none of out business. Faith can be a bitch sometimes, but for many of us, it is all we have.
Melissa's mom, Madeline, could use your prayers. So could her Dad with whom she was living. So could all of the Bautista family who are mourning the loss of one of their own. (BTW...there are 17 kids in the Bautista family with an extended family of near 50. They are all close.)
Kiss your loved ones tonight and tell them you love them. Pray for them as they leave your protection. Life is short, that we all know. Facing mortality is not a pleasant business but it is life. Enjoy what you have. Enjoy the people you have. Enjoy the time you have. For one day, it will be gone.