He Was 19!
(New Orleans, LA, USA)
It was at the very end of August, just one week away from Josh beginning his senior year of high school. He had spent the entire day with his best friend of all of life Mikey and they were getting ready to go riding on their motorcycles. Mikey had always gone with him whenever Josh wanted to ride. That night would be no different.
Josh had just turned 19 in June and for his birthday my uncle, his cousin, had co-signed for his motorcycle. Josh worked three jobs to get that motorcycle and prided every moment he had it.
That night though, on August 31, 2004, Josh was hit by a drunk driver pulling out of the parking lot of Applebee's Restaurant. The man who collided with my beloved cousin was just above the .08%, and his wife who was seated beside him, blew a clear 0.00%. The man had insisted to his wife that he was fine to drive, that he hadn't drank that much, that he drove before when he had moreso to drink. She believed him and let him drive home.
But the man didn't see my cousin in time, as his reaction to what was happening was impaired greatly. Before he knew it, Josh was flung off his bike, about 20 feet down the road, his helmet in the opposite direction. The impact was so great that it caused several internal injuries severe enough to cause almost complete instantaneous death. He was 19.
Josh never saw it coming, and neither did Mikey. Having to watch his best friend die is something I hope I never have to endure, but it still hurts just the same that two supposedly responsible adults killed my cousin who was also the closest thing to a big brother I ever had. Our family was, and most of them still are, in a very big shock.
Josh was loved by everyone in the Rome area. At his funeral there were well over 5,000 vehicles, with more yet to be turned away. The cemetary in which he is buried is about 15 miles away from the funeral home, and when my parents and I reached the cemetary, there were still some cars just leaving the home, coming from another town, trying to pull into the large cemetary, and yet more to come from God knows where. It was a never-ending line to bid my dear cousin goodbye.
Josh was never able to finish his senior year, play the last year of Varsity Football or go to his Senior Ball. He will never be married, never have children, never have the joys of watching them grow old and have children of their own. He will never be able to live his dreams and will never have seen the world become what he had hoped for it.
One man who was suppose to be a responsible adult, acted childish in his judgment and took the life of an innocent teen who never did anything to him.
It is something that man must live with everyday of his natural born life and it is something we all must remember for the same amount of time. It wasn't fair for a 19 year old to have his life taken away, and I hope the Ultimate Judge will grant the due punishment deserved.
It was a friend, a brother, a son, a nephew, a cousin, a grandson, a lover that was taken from the world. A gift I know will never be seen again in this lifetime. That man I know will pay the price, one day. Karma never fails.