Be careful what you wish for… it may come true.
On Thursday evening I was relaxing in my Maxwell Park home noticing the stillness. My life has been busy recently and I missed the excitement. About five minutes later, two neighbors walked past our house and mentioned a memorial service for a neighbor who had been shot a day earlier. I did not miss the excitement that much. (Photo Gallery Here)
I had been so busy with my own life, I was unaware that Judy Salamon had been shot. I had noticed the helicopters hovering over our neighborhood the day earlier, but I hoped that they were visiting for an afternoon traffic incident. Helicopters and homicides are too common in my neighborhood. It is easier to pray for bad traffic.
Perhaps I would have learned about the memorial online, but on Thursday, our internet modem broke, so I missed all the messages from our neighborhood listserv. I missed the Community Event organized in the aftermath of the shooting.
I would have missed the Candlelight Vigil too, if not for concerned neighbors who shared their grief. At the vigil, neighbors shared ideas for reducing random gun deaths, but the discussions were probably ways to process shared grief. This is not to diminish candlelight vigils. These are very important and if I am ever to die from a random gun shot, I would have been honored by the neighbors’ support.
I was honored to be part of my neighborhood on Thursday night just as I am honored to be part of the school community that my children attend despite the crime committed against it earlier this week. News vans arrived to tell the larger Bay Area about Melrose Elementary Losing More Than One Hundred Computers in an early morning break in. As someone who has lived in the neighborhood and written and photographed about the community for several years, I often wonder, “Where do the cameras go when they leave?”
We lost an important member of our community this week, but Maxwell Park will adapt. We will find a way to survive. We always do.