Monday, Oct. 18, 2004
Some days I really hate my job. Today was one of those days, but not because of the ungodly hours or the depressing wages. None of the typical things I whine about. Those things, despite my bellyaching, are within my power to change, even if the change might not be for the better right this instant.
Today's lead story on my newscast was the death of a 21-year-old local woman. She died Saturday morning in a riding accident, two weeks before she was poised to take the crown in a local beauty pageant. This was the first year for the pageant and she was the only entrant in her age division, so it was a sure thing. It was also her lifelong dream.
The dream ended when she rode in a local rodeo event and her borrowed black mare bolted, throwing her into a metal rail. She succumbed to severe head injuries just a short while later, after an ambulance carried her to the hospital. All of her family and friends were in the crowd, watching her as her life came to an abrupt, grisly end. So were all of the girls in the younger classes of the competition.
This was not some vacuous bimbo whose whole life was built around ego and appearances. She was a paramedic. She devoted her too-short life to helping other people. She acted as a volunteer with the county's search-and-rescue team for five years. Her family's tribute to her is to ask that memorials in her name be made to the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity. Even in her death, her tradition of giving continues.
She will be missed.
Before - After
In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )