by C. Patel
(Port Saint Lucie, Fl, USA)
Four Fraternity Brothers
Ankeet Patel and three of his other fraternity brothers were killed by a drunk and suicidal driver on February 9th, 2014 at around 2:12 AM. They were going down the Interstate 275 while a wrong way driver in pursuit of death, crashed into the fraternity brothers head on. All four USF's Sigma Beta Rho brothers died on scene including the wrong way driver. These four young men had dreams and a long life ahead of them but were cut short by someone selfish and cowardly.
One of the passengers in that car was my baby brother, Ankeet Patel. This kid was one of a kind. He was always smiling, humble, courageous and funny as heck. His smile alone could ease your pain and stress. I don't know god and may never, but I always saw god in him.
Ankeet had big dreams, he wanted to work for Goldman Sachs as a financial analyst/banker. (His favorite phrase, " Bottles and Models!") He would always ask me silly questions like, " What color tie should I wear to my first interview?" and " You think the boss would hate me if I wore a better suit than him?" It was funny. But he would make sure everything was in place for his dreams to come true. He even joined a fraternity to help him get connections and build his resume. But it wasn't until after he joined, we realized it meant more to him than that. He loved that fraternity and always talked about his brothers. He was only at the University of South Florida for one semester but he enjoyed it.
My brother was very wise for a 22 year old. Any time me or my sister would complain about small things, he'd be there to set us straight with just a few simple words and a smile. He was always right though. It's like he knew life too well to be living it any longer. Maybe that's why he's gone, I'll never know.
Again for a 22 year old, he was very mature. He had a bond with his niece like that of a father and his daughter. I remember a few times when me and him would jokingly fight over what would happen to our niece if god forbid anything happened to her mother. (GOD FORBID!) He would always say he's gonna be the rich one so she would be better off with him. We would laugh, meanwhile her mother is sitting in the background crying, " I'm still here. Stop talking like that!" He loved her and she misses him everyday. She always asks about him and I tell her he's in the stars. She is only 3 but she is beginning to know what that means. Every time I say it she cries and she screams, " No! He's in Tampa!" Even she refuses to believe he's gone.
My message to everyone is, when you step behind the wheel drunk, you aren't just risking taking someone's life. You're risking to take away their hopes and dreams and you're giving pain to family and friends that loved them. Also, love your family and when you do or say something wrong to them, apologize immediately. You may regret never being able to again.
I can honestly say, my life will never be the same. That kid was the light in our lives and now he's gone. There will always be a big part of me missing from my life. I just hope my baby brother knows I love him, miss him and would give my life to have him here, give all my happiness for him.
R.I.P. Return If Possible Ankeet, Imtiyaz, Jobin and Dammie. We Love You!