Saturday, March 12, 2016

The Lonely Walk of the Only Son

There was a very sad story reported on in these parts earlier this week.  A young man, eighteen years young in fact, who by all outward appearances had the world at his feet and an enviable future, took his own life.  

Yesterday, those who loved Jacob J. "Cody" St. Phard most of all, including of course his parents, his sister, the rest of his family, and his friends, gathered to say goodbye to him.  At the Princeton Alliance Church in Plainsboro, 1,500 programs were printed up for the service.  All of them were distributed well in advance of the service's completion.  

Being a parent is the most terrifying job on the planet because of the stakes involved.  As a parent you try your level best to keep your child safe from all dangers, seen and unseen, known and unknown.  The likelihood of you being wholly successful in your mission is absurdly low.  But it is a job that most of us, once we have signed up for it, would not trade for any other.  Not even temporarily. 

His mom and dad, admittedly not knowing what else to do since this is not something covered in the manual, a copy of which none of us are given when we become parents but yet the contents of which all of us are presumed to possess a working knowledge, established a GoFundMe page in his honor (#flyhighCoby), the purpose of which they humbly acknowledged remains unclear to them. The important thing for them was to be able to ascribe a happy thought to a despairing event the depth of which is presently incapable of being plumbed. 

And hope like Hell that at some point, which right now might not be discernible along the horizon line, happy thoughts become significantly easier for them to attain.  I would not pretend to know when that point in time is or what one does to ensure its arrival.  I hope that I shall never be required to find out.  

And I wish like hell that it is an experience they could have been spared as well.  


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