Sorry for the delay, computer problems!
I have thought about this post on and off forever, knowing I would have to address this someday but dreading the day I actually had to write it because it brings back so much sadness. ..But this month I have had experiences that brought the topic to my mind and I said to John; " If you don't give my something else to write about this is the month I am telling your story!"...well I had my answer when at school this week I saw a kid wearing a T- Shirt with the exact phrase I was going to use for my blog this month. Do Your Job is something I have never seen on a shirt worn by a teenager before so I did a double take, and figured I had my sign...
The death of your child is one of the few things that every parent can relate to..you don't have to live it to understand..so you won't find it hard to believe that we were living in a fog the weekend he went missing... just concentrating on the next breath rather than the horror our life was becoming...but even in the fog I was aware that things were not quite right, I just couldn't muster the energy to do anything beyond asking questions.
The first inkling I had that people weren't doing their job was when they found John's body and they told us that the area was going to be treated like a crime scene, so we might not want to go there. I asked if the house where he was staying was also a crime scene and the police told me that it was not because the kids came from good families...I did think to myself, gee, I think we are a good family, but didn't say anything because I figured I couldn't prove we were nice so why would he believe me?
We also couldn't prove that John hated the ocean to anyone who didn't know him. It was only hearsay and I was afraid we would look like we were trying to make excuses for him. When the State Police tried to tell us that their "marine officer" thought John may have tripped as he walked along the waters edge, got water splashed in his face, seen the lights across the harbor and walked towards them, which made him go deeper into the ocean. Thank God my husband is stronger than I am, he did loose it with that one...I mean ...really....did they think we were complete idiots? John only had 4 beers that night (and believe me, they checked for everything), the water was about 50 degrees, and although he was a great swimmer, he had a fear of sharks and never got his head wet in the ocean during the daytime, so ....really? They wanted us to believe that a kid who graduated Magna Cum Laude from Newhouse School of Communication at Syracuse wouldn't just turn around and look where the shore was as the 50 water got higher and higher on his legs?
I trusted that people were doing their job even though my cousin, who was the funeral director, commented on John's two black eyes and the line across his forehead, and suggested that maybe we should do our own autopsy. My husband asked the state police if they felt they had enough information and trusted them when they said they did...but later tried to explain away those marks by saying that they were made from brushing against the ocean floor...again...really?
As I said, I have always resisted recounting this story in my blog because it is so very painful for us. I feel that I have let John down, I know that people who read about his death think he was probably just another drug using drummer, and that is so unfair to him...but only people who were lucky enough to know him realize (and were pushing us from the start) someone wasn't doing their job.
Now, I can't change my life, I can only go on and do the best I can, maybe my blog is my effort to correct the injustice done to John ....but the fact remains that there are people who don't do their jobs, and sometimes it is devastating to others...So that is my message this month...a new year will soon be upon us and may be a good time to assess yourself...are you doing a good job.??....are you even doing your job at all???.....as a parent.....a friend...an employee.....if not....maybe you have your New Years Resolution!