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One Thousand, Five Hundred, and Seventy-Four Days Ago

by alyssa lerch 3 years ago in controversies
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"Guns don't die, people do."

It is June 3rd, 2019. This means it has been precisely 1,574 days since the day that gun violence struck a cord in my heart, personally.

On February 10th, 2015, a man that I spent a majority of my life around was shot and murdered in cold blood. While most people say things like, "guns don't kill people, people kill people," I agree, 100 percent. This is not some anti-gun entry, in fact I'm not even going to talk about guns as a whole. I will however talk about the way my friend; my brother, left this earth due to somebody being so heartless.

1,574 days ago I was in school, and it was such a normal day. I went to all of my classes, I did all of the required work—okay, maybe not super normal—but I was sitting in the art room when my tiny town changed forever. Our school was called into a code red, (if you don't know what that is, it's a lockdown.) There were other minuscule things that were going on throughout this day, so I expected the lockdown, because of said things. If I told you I expected the death of my dearest friend, I'd be lying. You kind of have to know my town to know how close the destination of his death, and my school were. I'll just say it was less than a five minute walk. It was less than a two minute walk. We didn't hear a thing. We didn't hear the sirens, we didn't hear the fatal shot that took my friend's life on this day. We were less than a two minute walk away, and the two minute walk that I didn't make often, became a walk I took for months after his death.

1,574 days ago, I was walking to my house, and I still had no idea that my friend was taken from this earth, how insane is that? I was walking up an alley, with no idea what had happened to someone I loved so dearly, as if my world wasn't about to crumble. Funny how the world does that, huh?

1,574 days ago, someone my brother considered a "friend," took the fatal shot that ultimately ended his life. It was not until almost a year later, precisely 361 days, that this human being was charged with his murder, and taken off of his bond and put in a prison cell.

1,574 days ago, my friend, and my brother lost his life, and I guess I have one question. When are we going to realize that guns don't die, and that people do, every single day? When are we going to realize that 10 seconds of anger is not worth a gunshot wound and a life? Okay, that was two. Here's a few more. When are we going to think about the people around your victim? Was it really worth it?

I was only 14 years old when I had to look at my brother, as he watched our brother lay in a casket and try my hardest not to cry. I was only 14 years old when the same man who protected me throughout every bad decision in my life, lost the ability to do the same to his own children. I was only 14 years old when I had to look at this man's parents with tears in my eyes, and wonder how a parent goes on after losing their children.

More importantly, he was only 18 years old, barely an adult, when he told his parents that he loved them one more time. He was only 18 years old when his last words were not, "I love you," but instead, "This has to be a joke." He was only 18 years old when his life was over. He was barely an adult.

My friend died bravely, and with honor. I have no doubt in my mind that he'd be doing amazing things with the people he loved most.

So before you pull the trigger, think about me, think about my friend, and think about his family, and think about yourself. Before you react, think about who you are taking from this world. Even if you think in that second of anger that nobody cares, I care. I am here to tell you, no matter what you feel in that moment, it will be ten times better than what the people around them will feel for the rest of their lives.

I spend every second thinking of my friend, I pray to God, that you spend one second thinking about this article before you pull the trigger. Gun's don't die, but people do. Every single day. Please remember that.

1,574 days ago, I lost my dearest friend to gun violence. Please, take just one second and think about the life that you could be taking.

And to my dearest friend,

I pray for your soul every day, and I know that you are always watching. I love you for infinity. I will see you again someday.

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About the author

alyssa lerch

19. Self love.

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