I write about my life and life itself seen through my eyes for who can write through the experiences of others if not their own?

Monday, April 01, 2013

A Star Lost Too Soon


The news felt hard, unannounced on this Easter Sunday. A quick glimpse at Facebook was all I needed. Facebook has that quality. It disseminates non sense information quickly and occasionally important information like this time. 

There it was, 21 year old Columbia student found dead shortly before noon. I remember her. She was one of those faces you remember. One of those people you like when you meet them. I remember my conversation with her before she went on a 4 year free ride to Columbia University, a scholarship earned with her hard work in track setting her as one of the fastest females in the state. I told her I watched her in a 1500 meter competition, she had stayed behind the leader wearing her out. Lap after lap she stayed a few feet away. I am sure the girl behind could feel her breath over her shoulder. On the last lap Jessica had taken over and left her competition half way behind. It was a beautiful finish. She smiled humbly and admitted that was the plan all along, to tire her competition out and then go for the kill. 

She was found dead, face up in a friend’s dorm possibly from an overdose. An overdose in an athlete who took pride in her work and who once was quoted saying “This is what happens when you do the right things and do what you’re supposed to do,”
What happened that suddenly she did not do the right thing?

 I cannot wrap my mind around succumbing to a drug when there is so much to live for. When the future is bright, when your hard work is noticed and it pays off.  Can our senses, our ability to know right from wrong be so clouded by being in love with the wrong person that we stray down the wrong path?  

I don’t know the answer, medically we will know soon once her autopsy is performed, but no one will know what went through her head when she made the wrong choice of using a drug that would be her demise.  

It is a sad loss for those who knew her. It is a sad loss for the world of athletes and for those who through her believed in following a dream with hard work.  Sadly in her last moments, she chased the wrong dream.